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Trial to start today for 2 Toccoa men in terror plot

POSTED: January 6, 2014 11:49 p.m.

A jury has been selected in the case of two North Georgia men facing federal charges in what prosecutors call a terror plot in which the men targeted U.S. cities and officials by conspiring and attempting to make the toxin ricin.

Eight men and six women were selected Monday to hear the case against Ray Adams and Samuel Crump, both of Toccoa, who were arrested in 2011 along with two others. 

An indictment filed Dec. 10 accuses Adams and Crump of attending meetings to discuss forming a covert militia group to plan “armed attacks on government buildings and federal government employees, including law enforcement agents.”

A key question asked of some potential jurors by U.S. District Court Judge Richard Story was whether or not they had any knowledge of militia or paramilitary groups, and if they did, if they had any inclination about the political leanings of those groups. Those who were aware of militia groups mostly said their knowledge came from either news reports or educational programming on channels such as A&E or History Channel.

Because of the publicity the case drew in 2011, Story also asked the potential jurors if their exposure to media coverage of the arrests would affect their ability to listen to the case fairly. Those asked indicated it would not.

The other two men involved in the case, Frederick Thomas of Cleveland and Dan Roberts of Toccoa, pleaded guilty in April to conspiring to get an unregistered explosive and an illegal gun silencer. They were sentenced in August to five years in prison.

The selected jurors were asked to report at 9:30 a.m. today at the Federal Building and Courthouse in Gainesville, barring any inclement weather.


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