Monday, October 17, 2016

FBI warned of occupiers' kidnap plot

The FBI warned federal officials and local law enforcement of a potential kidnapping plot during the armed occupation of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge last winter, according to emails obtained by E&E News. In an email sent Jan. 6, four days after the standoff began, an intelligence analyst in the FBI's Portland, Ore., division warned FBI colleagues as well as Harney County Sheriff David Ward and his staff of a threat involving Ryan Payne, a leader of the standoff. "Payne reportedly plans to take a 'fed' hostage in exchange for a prisoner currently detained in Seattle," the analyst wrote under the subject line "Duty to Warn — Officer and Citizen Safety." The analyst said there are "no additional details regarding Payne's plans." The FBI official added that the "information is being disseminated due to Sheriff Ward's potential meeting with militia members and for officer (and possibly citizen) safety." The email was marked "UNCLASSIFIED/LAW ENFORCEMENT SENSITIVE" and said it should not be shared outside of the U.S. government. It appears to have been sent to warn Ward. The sheriff, who became a public face of law enforcement during the 41-day standoff, was planning to meet with Payne and Ammon Bundy, another leader of the occupation, the following day, Jan. 7...more

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