Courts & Crime

Fort Hood terror plot was thwarted by gun store's tip

KILLEEN -- Pfc. Naser Jason Abdo carefully cultivated an image of a peace lover, both inside the Army and outside it.

An infantryman from Garland who enlisted in 2009, Abdo filed for conscientious-objector status last year shortly before his 101st Airborne Division unit deployed to Afghanistan, citing his Muslim faith as the reason he could not go to war.

He gave several interviews, including one to CNN in which he said he "started really asking myself whether God would accept what I was doing and whether I was really meant to go to war, as opposed to the peace that Islam preaches."

Abdo was charged today in Waco with possession of an unregistered destructive device in connection with a bomb plot, according to U.S. Attorney's Office.

A criminal complaint says that Abdo was in possession of a .40 caliber handgun, ammunition, an article entitled "Make a bomb in the kitchen of your Mom," as well as bomb-making components. Those included six bottles of smokeless gunpowder, shotgun shells, shotgun pellets, two clocks, two spools of auto wire, an electric drill and two pressure cookers.

The complaint says Abdo intended to use the materials to assemble two destructive devices with the intention of detonating them inside an unspecified restaurant frequented by soldiers from Fort Hood. Abdo, who was arrested by the Killeen Police Department, is in federal custody. If convicted, he faces up to 10 years in federal prison and a maximum $250,000 fine.

The attack was apparently an attempt to reprise the November 2009 massacre at Fort Hood.

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