Five of the six men involved in the plot to kidnap Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer and violently overthrow the government will stand trial, a federal judge ruled Friday. The decision came after two days of testimony, in which defense lawyers argued that the plot was nothing more than “big talk” and prosecutors insisted the men, who allegedly teamed up with local militias, knew they were doing a “sinister thing”—hinting at “a lot more” evidence to come. “It doesn’t have to be a good plan to be dangerous. They got caught because they are amateurs,” Assistant U.S. Attorney Nils Kessler said Friday.
Last week, federal prosecutors charged six men—Adam Fox, Ty Garbin, Kaleb Franks, Daniel Harris, Brandon Caserta, and Barry Croft—in the plot snatch Whitmer before Election Day and put her on trial for treason. In all, 14 people have been charged with state and federal crimes, including members of the Wolverine Watchmen militia. The group allegedly undertook training drills, tried to make IEDs, surveilled Whitmer’s vacation home, and discussed attacking police and state buildings or “taking out” Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam.