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The man who plotted to kidnap Governor Whitmer was sentenced to 16 years in prison

The man who plotted to kidnap Governor Whitmer was sentenced to 16 years in prison

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In explaining his decision not to hand down a life sentence, Judge Yonker said Mr Fox did not appear to be a natural leader, his tactical skills were limited and that the plot had little chance of success because law enforcement had infiltrated the group.

Ms Whitmer, who was re-elected for a second term last month, said after the trial that the verdicts showed “that violence and threats have no place in our politics and those who seek to divide us will be held accountable”. Her spokesman did not immediately respond to a request for comment Tuesday. State Attorney General Dana Nessel, a Democrat, said in a statement that “Adam Fox’s actions undermine the safety of every Michigan resident” and that “his sentence sends a clear message that domestic terrorism will not be tolerated.”

At his first trial in the spring, jurors acquitted two of Mr. Fox’s co-defendants but failed to reach verdicts on charges against Mr. Fox and another man, Barry Croft. In a second trial this summer, which took place amid a tense campaign in politically divided Michigan, Mr. Fox and Mr. Croft were each convicted of conspiracy to kidnap and conspiracy to use a weapon of mass destruction.

Two other men, Ty Garbin and Caleb Franks, pleaded guilty for conspiracy to kidnap in federal court and testify against Mr. Fox and Mr. Croft, who are scheduled to be sentenced Wednesday. Mr. Garbin was sentenced to 30 months in prison and Mr. Franks was sentenced to four years.

Three others linked to the plot were convicted in state court in October of aiding and abetting acts of terrorism. They got sentences which could land them in prison for at least seven years to 20 years. Five more men were charged in state court in another county and are awaiting trial.

Mr Fox told Judge Yonker he did not want to speak to the court before the sentence was announced. As prosecutors made their case for a life sentence, Mr. Fox, who wore an orange prison jumpsuit and a white long-sleeved T-shirt, looked repeatedly toward the courtroom gallery.

When prosecutors announced charges against the men just weeks before the 2020 presidential election, the case quickly became one of the most high-profile domestic terrorism charges in recent history. Many saw the plot as indicative of the growing threat of political violence and right-wing domestic terrorism, concerns that became even more pronounced after the January 6, 2021, riot at the US Capitol.

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