A Florida man was arrested on Saturday and charged with one count of attempted use of a weapon of mass destruction after an FBI sting operation.
The 25-year-old Muslim was born in Kosovo and is a naturalized citizen of the United States living in Florida. MSMBC.com reports that the FBI had been following the case for months after they got a tip four months ago that Sami Osmakac was asking around for weapons and “al-Qaeda flags.”
An undercover federal agent had been met with Osmakac on Dec. 21 pretending to supply weaponry. A federal complaint says Osmakac requested and left a down payment of $500 for an explosive belt which he could use in several Tampa, Florida locations, an AK-47, grenades, Uzi submachine guns, and high-capacity magazines.
The complaint also says Osmakac made a video tape prior to his arrest in which he explains his purpose for the attempted mass attacks.
Osmakac told the agent on New Year’s Day "I want to do something, something terrifying, like one day, one night, something's going to happen, then six hours later, something else,” according to court papers.
Documents also allege Osmakac planned to attack nightclubs, the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office and a company in South Tampa on New Year's Day. He also discussed holding citizens hostage in order to have prisoners released.
The Wall Street Journal reports that the public was never in danger as the weapons he received from the agent were dummies.
"According to the complaint, Osmakac also asked the undercover employee whether he/she could build bombs that could be placed in three different vehicles and detonated remotely, near where Osmakac would conduct a follow-up attack using the other weapons he requested," said a press release obtained by MSNBC.
"The undercover employee said he/she could possibly provide explosives for one vehicle. Osmakac also allegedly said that he wanted an explosive belt constructed to kill people.”
The undercover agent gave Osmakac a chance during their December meeting telling him that he could change his mind and not go through with the attacks.
The press release stated Osmakac answered saying, “We all have to die, so why not die the Islamic way?”
Osmakac is set to appear in federal court on Monday afternoon.