(NewsGlobal.com)- In their closing arguments Monday, the defense for two men accused of conspiring to abduct Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer in 2020 will blame the FBI.
The government has presented Adam Fox and Barry Croft Jr. as plotters to kidnap Whitmer from her Elk Rapids vacation house.
Prosecutors believe Fox, Croft, and their allies were angry with COVID-19 limits, disillusioned with the government, and intended to send a message.
Fox and Croft’s attorneys argue they were stupid, foul-mouthed, marijuana-smoking free speech activists incapable of abducting a public figure. FBI agents and informants fuelled their wrath.
Christopher Gibbons remarked, “FBI fingerprints are everywhere.”
Brandon Caserta, another guy charged in the scheme, said, ‘If the government weren’t involved, it wouldn’t be where it is now.’
“People say nasty and violent things, but there’s a distinction between doing violence and talking s***,” he said
Caserta was cleared last year.
In opening statements, Croft’s counsel said he was ‘high on marijuana all the time,’ and witnesses called him a ‘stoner pirate sort of whack nut.’
The jury has heard covertly recorded talks and seen violent social media messages; some made before FBI involvement.
Two undercover officers and an informant testified for hours about the men’s training and visited Whitmer’s home.
Ty Garbin and Kaleb Franks pled guilty and said the group wasn’t entrapped.
Prosecutors revealed evidence that Fox wanted to ‘hog-tie’ Whitmer and canoe her to Lake Michigan, while Croft wrote about hanging governors for treason.
They stated they created a mock-up of the governor’s summer residence and surveilled it.
Judge Robert Jonker warned jurors this week that the two men might be found guilty of conspiracy if they feel ‘there was a mutual understanding’ to kidnap, even if one wasn’t carried out.
The court said entrapment might apply if the jury finds agents and informants influenced Fox and Croft to do a crime they weren’t willing to do beforehand.
Fox and Croft are on trial again after a jury couldn’t reach a unanimous judgment in April but convicted two others.
39-year-old Fox lived in a Grand Rapids vacuum shop’s basement.
Whitmer, a Democrat, criticized then-President Trump for sowing mistrust, fomenting outrage about coronavirus limitations, and refusing to condemn hate groups and right-wing radicals.
She claimed Sunday she hasn’t followed the trials but is concerned about ‘violent speech.’
The trend is dangerous. We can’t allow it to become normal, and I hope anyone intending to damage Americans is held accountable,’ Whitmer said at the Michigan Democratic Party conference in Lansing.
Trump termed the kidnapping plan ‘fake.’