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Homeland Security News

A collection of open-source homeland security and terrorism news from around the world.
Date: Jul 2, 2020

Madison police said a person of interest was arrested Tuesday night, June 30 in connection with an arson attack on the City County Building.

Police said Marquon Clark, 26, was arrested on a probation hold after a traffic stop near Verona Road.

While officers were trying to stop Clark’s car, police said the driver of a pickup truck — which was following behind Clark’s car — intentionally swerved at a marked Madison police squad car. The officer had to take evasive measures.

The truck’s driver, identified by police as Conner Fleck, 25, of Pardeeville, was arrested for second-degree recklessly endangering safety.

Read more: Fox 6

A St. Charles County man is facing multiple charges after he reportedly hid bomb materials in multiple locations in O'Fallon and in his St. Peters home.

An ATF investigation led agents, along with members of the St. Charles County Bomb Squad, to an O'Fallon apartment on June 22, where they found several bomb-making materials, including gunpowder, Tannerite, petroleum jelly and acetone.

Several shotgun shells had been cut open and the steel shot inside had been removed. The resident of the apartment told investigators his friend, 25-year-old Cameron M. Swoboda, had brought the materials there. The friend said he watched Swoboda produce an explosive mixture with the items, and added Swoboda had produced something similar a month earlier. 

According to court documents, Swoboda's friends told police about his dislike for African Americans, Hispanics, the Black Lives Matter movement, and criminal justice reform. He had also told them that he would not hesitate to shoot or kill law enforcement. His friends told police they feared he was planning an attack on a large group of people.

Read more: KMOV

Police in Italy have confiscated a huge shipment of 14 metric tonnes (15.4 US tons) of amphetamines which they say was produced by ISIS in Syria.

Officers tracked three suspect containers to the port of Salerno in southwest Italy and found 84 million pills with a market value of €1 billion ($1.12 billion) inside paper cylinders for industrial use, the Guardia di Finanza financial police said in a statement Wednesday.

Investigators said the bust is the largest drug haul in the world in terms of both value and quantity.

Read more: CNN

Germany’s defense minister announced Wednesday that she would partially disband the most elite and highly trained special forces in the country, saying it had been infiltrated by far-right extremism.

The defense minister, Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer, said one of four fighting companies inside the special forces had become so infested with far-right extremism that it would be dissolved. The rest of the special forces unit, known by its German acronym, KSK, has until the end of October to overhaul its recruitment, training and leadership practices before being allowed to rejoin any international military exercises or missions.

“The KSK cannot continue in its current form,” Ms. Kramp-Karrenbauer told a news conference, describing “an unhealthy elitism” and “toxic leadership” inside the unit, which, she added, had “developed and promoted extremist tendencies.”

Read more: New York Times

When Army Pvt. Ethan Melzer found out in April that he was deploying to Turkey, U.S. prosecutors say, he began to plot. He allegedly browsed jihadist propaganda, including an ISIS account of attacks on American forces. In it, militants referred to a "harvest of the soldiers."

But the ambush 22-year-old Melzer was planning, authorities say, was driven by a different ideology. A federal indictment unsealed in June accuses Melzer of passing sensitive military information to fellow members of a Satanic neo-Nazi network, the Order of the Nine Angles. The target: Melzer's own unit.

While the case hinges on contacts with white supremacists, jihadist references are laced throughout. In May, prosecutors say, Melzer slipped information to someone he took for an al-Qaida operative. Court papers show a conversation where an alleged neo-Nazi asked Melzer if they were "literally organizing a jihadi attack," to which he replied, "Yes probably."

Read more: NPR