U.S.: Alleged anarchists targeted bridge

May 1, 2012 at 1:11 PM

CLEVELAND, May 1 (UPI) -- Five men -- including three self-described anarchists -- have been arrested and accused of trying to blow up a bridge near Cleveland, officials said Tuesday.

The FBI's Joint Terrorism Task Force arrested the three alleged anarchists Monday evening: Douglas L. Wright, 26, Brandon L. Baxter, 20, and Anthony Hayne, 35. They were charged with conspiracy and attempted use of explosive materials to damage physical property affecting interstate commerce.

Two other suspects, Connor C. Stevens, 20, and Joshua S. Stafford, 23, also were arrested, but a U.S. Justice Department statement did not specify the charges. The criminal complaint was filed in Cleveland.

The department said the public was never in danger. The explosive devices meant for the scheme were controlled by an undercover FBI employee, and the suspects were closely monitored.

The department statement said the initial plot involved the use of smoke grenades to distract law enforcement so the co-conspirators could topple financial institution signs atop high-rise buildings in downtown Cleveland.

But the suspects later conspired to obtain C-4 explosives contained in two improvised explosive devices to be placed and remotely detonated, the criminal complaint said.

After discussing targets for months, the group settled on the Route 82 Brecksville-Northfield High Level Bridge, the complaint alleged. The bridge crosses from Brecksville, Ohio, to Sagamore Hills, Ohio, over the Cuyahoga Valley National Park.

The five were scheduled to appear in court Tuesday.

Related UPI Stories
Latest Headlines
Trending Stories
TSU shooting: 1 dead, 1 wounded in third shooting this week at Houston campus
Listeria threat prompts Whole Foods cheese recall
Russia says missiles aimed at Syria did not land in Iran
Captive orca breeding banned at California's SeaWorld
Wrong drug used in Oklahoma execution