The five men accused of planning to kidnap Michigan governor Gretchen Whitmer said on Wednesday that the charges should be dropped, on account of the plot being driven by FBI informants.
The men said that the charges stem from government misconduct, and that it the informants who entrapped the men. They say that the informants used their anger of Whitmer as a tool, and that there was never any actual plan to kidnap the governor.
"The government picked what it knew would be a sensational charge: conspiracy to kidnap the governor,” the attorneys wrote, reports MLive.
“When the government was faced with evidence showing that the defendants had no interest in a kidnapping plot, it refused to accept failure and continued to push its plan. Eventually, the government initiated this case, despite the fact that it knew there was no plan to kidnap, no operational plan, and no details about how a kidnapping would occur or what would happen afterward.”
The defense attorneys also said that “because the government overreached and committed serious acts of misconduct against defendants who had repudiated the government’s suggested wrongdoing, the defense can establish entrapment as a matter of law.”
The five men charged with the kidnapping conspiracy are Adam Fox, 38; Barry Croft, 46; Kaleb Franks, 27; Daniel Harris, 24; and Brandon Caserta, 33.
A sixth man has already pleaded guilty to the charges, and was sentenced to six years in prison. Federal prosecutors have yet to respond to the defense's statements.
The defense also wrote: "The government conceived and controlled every aspect of the alleged plot. On September 5, 2020, FBI Special Agent Jayson Chambers texted CHS Dan: ‘Mission is to kill the governor, specially.'"
The men will stand trial on March 8, 2022, before US Chief District Judge Robert Jonker.
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