A trio of white Christian terrorists convicted of plotting to bomb a mosque in Kansas are blaming the rhetoric of Trump for their crime.
The convicted Christian terrorists called themselves “The Crusaders,” and were convicted of plotting to bomb a mosque and apartment complex housing Somali Muslims in Kansas earlier this year.
Now, lawyers for the convicted domestic terrorists are asking the judge for leniency in their sentencing because they were radicalized by the violent rhetoric of Donald trump.
Associated Press reports that defense attorneys “have asked the court to take into account at a sentencing hearing next month what they called President Donald Trump’s rhetoric encouraging violence.”
According to the report, prosecutors are seeking life terms for all three convicted domestic terrorists, while defense attorneys are pleading for much shorter terms of 15, 10, or even time served.
Last April a federal jury found Curtis Allen, 50; Gavin Wright, 49; and Patrick Eugene Stein, 49, each guilty of one count of conspiring to use a weapon of mass destruction as well as one count of violating the housing rights of their would-be victims.
In addition, Wright was also convicted of lying to the FBI.
According to reports, the Christian terrorists were big supporters of Trump, hated Hillary Clinton, despised Muslim refugees, and wanted to “wake people up” and “start a race war.”
At the time of his arrest, Curtis Allen’s Facebook page showed multiple anti-Muslim posts, including posts promoting violence against and the killing of Muslim people.
In addition, Allen posted Christian based hatred against LGBT people, including an image from Deuteronomy with the following text:
Deuteronomy chapter 22 verse 5. Read your bible everyone. The whole transgender issue is an abomination in the eyes of God
The Associated Press reports that the men were also associated with a militia group calling itself the Kansas Security Force.
Suggesting Trump was at least partially to blame for their client’s criminal behavior, lawyers wrote the following in their sentencing memorandum for Stein:
The court cannot ignore the circumstances of one of the most rhetorically mold-breaking, violent, awful, hateful and contentious presidential elections in modern history, driven in large measure by the rhetorical China shop bull who is now our president.
And in a sentencing memorandum for Wright, attorney’s wrote:
As long as the Executive Branch condemns Islam and commends and encourages violence against would-be enemies, then a sentence imposed by the Judicial Branch does little to deter people generally from engaging in such conduct if they believe they are protecting their countries from enemies identified by their own Commander-in-Chief.
U.S. District Judge Eric Melgren will begin to consider sentencing for the Christian terrorists on Nov. 19.
Bottom line: Three Christian terrorists convicted in a plot to bomb Somali Muslims living in Kansas blame the violent campaign rhetoric of Donald Trump for their crime.