Two neo-Nazis who were recorded plotting a violent attack to overthrow the US government were sentenced to nine years in prison.
Brian Mark Lemley, 35, and Canadian Patrik Jordan Mathews, 29, were members of the Base, a white nationalist terrorist group.
They pleaded guilty to the charges in June.
Although the couple were not found guilty of any violent crimes, the judge ruled that their sentences deserved an increase in terror.
CCTV cameras installed in their Delaware home captured the men discussing how a weapons rally in Richmond, Virginia last year could be used to orchestrate the fall of the U.S. government.
According to investigators, in addition to destroying rail lines and poisoning water supplies, they had planned to break out of the racist mass murderer Dylann Roof from a prison in Indiana.
US District Judge Theodore Chuang said the tape showed the “virulence” of their desire to kill and overthrow the US government, AP News reported. “The court rejects the idea that it was just chat between friends,” he added.
Mathews, a Canadian Army reservist, had fled Canada after his name was exposed by the Winnipeg Free Press.
He went on to live in the US state of Georgia, where he engaged in military-style training exercises with the group.
Lemley served as a US Army cavalry scout in Iraq before returning home and was diagnosed with PTSD.
“These sentences make it clear that their hateful efforts have failed,” said US prosecutor Erek Barron, who prosecuted the case.
“These men tried to divide our community on the basis of hatred,” he added in a press conference after the sentencing.
The men had previously pleaded guilty to immigration charges related to transporting Mathews, providing a weapon to an illegal foreigner, and transporting a gun across state lines to commit a crime and obstruction of justice.
The Base, formed in 2018, seeks to create terrorist cells in the United States and other countries in an effort to establish fascist and white ethno-states through “race warfare,” hate group monitors say.
In July, the UK Home Secretary announced that the group would be banned under the nation’s anti-terrorism laws.
Last year, a BBC investigation found that the group is led by US citizen Rinaldo Nazzaro, who lives in St. Petersburg, Russia.
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