Bomb Plot Arrest

Thursday, December 9, 2010 - 10:17am

FBI apprehends man planning to blow up Baltimore military recruiting station.

Federal authorities say they have stopped a terror plot targeting an armed forces career center just outside Baltimore, Maryland.

Suspect Antonio Martinez appeared in federal court Wednesday and was appointed a public defender.

He faces charges of attempted murder and attempted use of weapons of mass destruction in a plot authorities say was aimed at killing military members and recruits.

Federal investigators arrested Martinez, a 21-year-old construction worker, after he reportedly tried to detonate a car bomb outside the center.

The bomb was filled with what turned out to be phony explosives given to him by undercover agents.

Authorities say he posed no real threat to the public.

"All indications are he was acting alone and with hiw arrest today we have eliminated the threat," said FBI Special Agent in Charge Richard McFeely.

Prosecutors say Martinez was under surveillance for the past two months while plotting the attack.

The FBI says Martinez, also known as Muhammad Hussain, is a Muslim convert who became radicalized and posted internet videos supporting violent holy war.

Investigators say he contacted several people to obtain guns for him before an undercover informant approached him.

"Four civilians who were contacted by defendants, three turned him down and one turned him over to FBI," says US Attorney Rod Rosenstein.

It is the latest in a series of terrorist plots thwarted by authorities.

The day after Thanksgiving a Somali-American teen was arrested for plotting a car bomb attack at Portland, Oregon's Christmas tree lighting ceremony.

Martinez told a judge he could not afford his own attorney, and also testified he is married and understood the charges brought against him.

The judge ordered Martinez be held without bail until his next hearing on Monday.

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