Published: Thu, November 07, 2019
Worldwide | By Lisa Hogan

Man accused of plotting to bomb Colorado synagogue

Man accused of plotting to bomb Colorado synagogue

Holzer's arrest comes as Jewish institutions around the country are still reeling from the mass shooting last October at Pittsburgh's Tree of Life synagogue.

Federal officers on Friday arrested a suspected white supremacist accused of planning to bomb a synagogue in Colorado.

According to court documents, Richard Holzer planned to bomb the Temple Emanuel synagogue in the town of Pueblo as part of a "racial holy war".

An undercover Federal Bureau of Investigation agent purporting to be a woman who supports white supremacy contacted Holzer on Facebook in September, where he had allegedly used several accounts to promote white supremacist ideology and acts of racially-motivated violence, according to the complaint.

One of the leaders of the American alt-right movement has been caught on tape spewing antisemitic and racial slurs in.

His goal, he said, was to "make them know they're not wanted here", according to the affidavit.

The ADL had been monitoring Holzer's online activity since May 2016 and had shared information about what it observed but not regarding the alleged plot, said Scott Levin, director for the organization's Mountain States Region. Proof of his violent beliefs heaped up:images of him with weapons, Mein Kampf the e-book, and different white supremacist symbols; and the participation in aggressively anti-Semitic on-line chats; a swastika armband; messages displaying help for the Holocaust; a video of him holding a machete and asking: "may the gods be with me for what I must do". A voicemail left at the temple Monday afternoon wasn't immediately returned.

The agents continued communication with Holzer, and one agent the next day sent him pictures of what appeared to be pipe bombs, the complaint says.

On October 19, according to the complaint, Holzer sent a video of himself walking around the outside of the temple, the complaint says.

Holzer allegedly went on to suggest using explosive devices to destroy the synagogue and "get that place off the map" when meeting with undercover agents and coordinated with them to obtain explosives.

Holzer asked that a public defender be appointed for him during Monday's hearing.

Holzer used several Facebook accounts "to promote white supremacy ideology and acts of violence", the documents said.

Fox 31 reported that Holzer "threatened to poison the water pipes at the Temple Emanuel Synagogue and use a Molotov cocktail to blow it up".

He is in federal custody and faces a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison if convicted. According to the Anti-Defamation League, Holzer's arrest is the 13th time someone has been arrested on accusations of plotting attacks or making threats against the Jewish community since then.

"Pueblo is a diverse community, a community characterized by inclusiveness and not these types of behaviors", Troy Davenport, Pueblo's chief of police, said at the news conference.

Like this: