National Security

Virginia group’s members wanted to test bombs, secede from US: court records

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A Virginia man facing charges in connection with the Jan. 6 Capitol riot allegedly met with a “Bible study” group following the mob attack to discuss their desire to make Molotov cocktails and have part of the state secede from the United States. 

According to court records unsealed this week, an undercover Metropolitan Police Department (MPD) officer on Jan. 6 met Fi Duong, who allegedly climbed a wall of the U.S. Capitol before entering the building. 

The MPD officer then introduced Duong to an undercover FBI agent, who on Feb. 12 attended a meeting with Duong at a house in Alexandria, Va. 

The court documents in Duong’s case said that the group called itself a Bible study, noting that after “two Bible verses were discussed,” the individuals “spent the rest of the meeting discussing details of the group and planning future group activities. The future activities included Bible studies, but also included activities such as firearms and other training events.” 

During the meeting, the FBI agent also noted that Duong and others “discussed a Virginia secession movement called ‘the State of Appalachia.’ ”

According to the court filing, Duong “opined that this could be the most peaceful way to separate from the U.S. government, saying it was ‘the most peaceful way of avoiding any sort of conflict and if they have a problem with it, hey, we can settle this like men.’ ”

In a May 21 group meeting, the FBI agent noted that Duong referred to “making bombs using a chemical compound known as CS gas and the heating packet contained in military field meals known as ‘Meal, Ready-to-Eat.’ ”

When Duong reportedly questioned, “why the hell do you think I have all those boxes of wine bottles there?” an associate responded, “Molotovs.”

According to the court records, Duong had in his Alexandria home several weapons, including an AK-47, as well as five boxes of materials to make and test Molotov cocktails. 

Duong is just one of more than 535 individuals facing charges in connection with the Jan. 6 mob attack that occurred as Congress met to certify President Biden’s election win. 

The Virginia man has been charged with several crimes, including knowingly entering or remaining in any restricted building or grounds without lawful authority to do, disorderly conduct and obstruction of an official proceeding.

Duong allegedly told an undercover FBI agent during the mob attack that he purposely wore all black in an “effort to look like a member of Antifa.”

The man and some of his associates in the months following the mob attack, during which multiple people died and dozens of others were injured, also “coordinated additional surveillance efforts on the U.S. Capitol,” according to the FBI affidavit. 

The FBI is still investigating the riot six months later, saying it needs the public’s help in identifying 300 people believed to have committed violence at the Capitol, including 200 suspected of attacking law enforcement officers.

Tags alexandria Capitol riot Capitol riot charges court document D.C. Metropolitan police FBI Joe Biden Molotov cocktails Virginia
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