Cole James Bridges, a private first class in the US Army stationed at Fort Stewart, is accused of providing material support to ISIS and attempting to assassinate US service members.
An undercover FBI agent of Ohio origin was reportedly talked to when he thought he was planning an ISIS-inspired attack against the 9/11 Memorial and Museum.
He was also accused of planning to attack American soldiers.
Manhattan US Attorney Audrey Strauss said, “As alleged, Cole Bridge swore to give tactical military advice to defend America and try to kill his fellow service members, betraying the oath.” “Our forces risk their lives for our country, but they should not face such a crisis with their own hands. Today, thanks to the efforts of JTTF’s agents and spies and our allies in the Department of Defense. ” Bridges is in his custody and is facing federal terrorism charges for his alleged crimes. “
FBI Assistant Director William F. Sweeney Jr. said it was a fortunate man with whom he was an FBI employee.
“We were able to stop her evil desires from coming to fruition,” Sweeney said. “Bridges may have chosen a life of honorable service, but instead he traded it in for the possibility of a lengthy prison sentence. The case should serve as a reminder that the FBI’s New York JTTF is protecting our rations. We will never give up on our commitment. Those who want to do it harm. “
He will be produced in court on Thursday.
According to the criminal complaint, which was removed in Manhattan federal court on Tuesday, Bridges almost joined the US Army in September 2019, and was assigned to the Third Infantry Division in Fort Stewart, Georgia as a cavalry scout.
Beginning at least 2019, Bridges allegedly began researching and consuming online propaganda promoting jihadists and their violent ideology. He reportedly expressed his support for the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham (“ISIS”) and jihad on social media.
The criminal complaint states or about October 2020, Bridges began communicating with the FBI online undercover staff (“OCE”), working as ISIS supporters in contact with ISIS fighters in the Middle East . During these communications, Bridges expressed his disappointment with his desire to assist the US Army and ISIS.
The bridge reportedly provided training and guidance to ISIS fighters who were planning an attack, including advice about possible targets in New York City, such as the 9/11 memorial, and a U.S. Army training OCE was also provided with parts of the manual and guidance. Military combat strategy for use by ISIS.
According to the criminal complaint, in mid-2020, Bridges began supplying the OCE with instructions from ISIS fighters to attack the US military in the Middle East.
Among other things, the bridge allegedly drew specific military maneuvers intended to help ISIS fighters increase the maximum capability of attacks on American troops.
Bridges reportedly advised on the best way to reinforce ISIS encroachments to quell an attack by the US Special Forces, involving some buildings with explosives to kill US troops.
Then, in January 2021, the criminal complaint stated that Bridges provided OCE with a video of himself standing in front of a flag used by ISIS fighters and symbolizing a gesture of support for ISIS . About a week later, Bridges allegedly sent a second video, in which he used a voice manipulator, to deliver a propaganda speech in support of ISIS’s anticipated ambush on US troops.
He is charged with attempting to provide material support to ISIS in violation of 18 USC 2339B, which carries a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison; And (2) the attempted murder of members of the US military service in violation of 18 USC 1114, which carries a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison.
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