A 21-year-old Georgia man was arrested for allegedly plotting to bomb the White House and other Washington, DC, sites, including a synagogue, officials said Wednesday.
Hasher Taheb, of Cumming, Georgia, allegedly planned to use, among other weapons, improvised explosive devices made of C4 and an anti-tank rocket on Jan. 17 to cause as much damage as possible, and even had sketches of a White House floor plan, officials said.
He was arrested Jan. 16 by undercover FBI agents.
“All potential threats have been neutralized,” US Attorney BJay Pak said during a brief news conference in downtown Atlanta.
FBI Special Agent Chris Hacker said the Georgia Joint Terrorism Task Force conducted a yearlong investigation into Taheb before working with local authorities to arrest him during a weapons sale in Gwinnett County.
According to an affidavit filed by the FBI, a community member tipped off the agency to Taheb’s activities in March 2018, adding that he had become “radicalized, changed his name, and made plans to move abroad.”
When an undercover FBI agent met with Taheb to ostensibly buy his car, the 21-year-old told the operative that after traveling abroad, he planned to launch an attack on the White House, the Statue of Liberty, the Washington Monument, the Lincoln Memorial, and a Washington, DC, synagogue, according to the affidavit.
He also allegedly showed the agent sketches he had drawn of the White House floor plan in preparation.
“Tahed explained that jihad was an obligation, that he wanted to do as much damage as possible, and that he expected to be a ‘martyr,’ meaning that he expected to die during the attack,” the affidavit states.
He allegedly planned to stuff a backpack full of explosives and carry it to the White House himself after shooting a rocket at the building to create a distraction.
On Jan. 16, he exchanged his car for inert explosives provided by two undercover FBI agents, after which they arrested him.