A US Coast Guard lieutenant and self-described white nationalist was plotting to kill a list of prominent Democrat politicians and journalists before his arrest last week, US prosecutors have said in a court filling.
Christopher Paul Hasson, 49, wrote a draft email describing how he was "dreaming of a way to kill almost every last person on the earth” and pondering how to acquire the means to launch a biological attack, it is alleged.
He was arrested on February 15 and is accused of being a "domestic terrorist".
On Thursday a US judge ordered Hatton to be jailed until his trial.
Hasson routinely read portions of a manifesto written by Norwegian mass murderer Anders Behring Breivik that instructs would-be attackers on how to collect firearms, disguises and survival tools, according to court papers.
Prosecutors also said Hasson drafted a letter to a neo-Nazi leader in which he “identified himself as a White Nationalist for over 30 years and advocated for ‘focused violence’ in order to establish a white homeland”.
US federal agents found 15 firearms, including several rifles, and more than 1,000 rounds of ammunition inside Hasson’s basement apartment in Silver Spring, Maryland. They also found a container with more than 30 bottles that were labeled as human growth hormone.
Agents discovered an apparent hit list which included prominent Democrats like House speaker Nancy Pelosi, Senate minority leader Chuck Schumer and presidential hopefuls Kirsten Gillibrand, Elizabeth Warren, Cory Booker and Kamala Harris.
The list – created in a Microsoft Excel spreadsheet – also named prominent journalists such as MSNBC’s Chris Hayes and Joe Scarborough and CNN’s Chris Cuomo and Van Jones.
Prosecutors said that Hasson “began the process of targeting specific victims” and that he had searched the internet for “most liberal senators” as well as “do senators have ss [secret service] protection”.
Hasson works at the Coast Guard’s office in Washington, DC. He served in the Marine Corps from 1988 to 1993 and then spent around two years of active duty in the Army National Guard, according to The New York Times.
In one June 2017 draft email quoted by prosecutors, Hasson wrote: “I am dreaming of a way to kill almost every last person on the earth. I think a plague would be most successful but how do I acquire the needed / Spanish flu, botulism, anthrax not sure yet but will find something.”
Hasson appeared to be a chronic user of the opioid painkiller Tramadol and had purchased a flask filled with four ounces of "synthetic urine" online, prosecutors said. Authorities suspect Hasson had purchased fake urine to use in case he was randomly selected for a drug test.