Teen Arrested In Homegrown ISIS Terror Plot

(NationalUSNews.com) — The FBI recently prevented a homegrown ISIS terror plot against several Idaho churches and arrested the teenager who created the domestic terrorism plan, causing renewed concerns about ISIS’s ability to recruit young American citizens.

The FBI identified the teen in question as Alexander Mercurio, an 18-year-old from Idaho who planned on using his father’s guns along with several bladed weapons and explosives to carry out an attack in Coeur d’Alene, a popular tourist location within the state. Mercurio allegedly wanted to attack several churches within Coeur d’Alene, seeking to kill dozens of innocent church-going citizens for ISIS.

Mercurio’s initial plan involved attacking his father, whom Mercurio would restrain using zip ties or handcuffs. After restraining his father, Mercurio planned to take his father’s firearms and use them to attack several churches during service hours to ensure a large number of casualties. The FBI had prior knowledge of Mercurio expressing his support for ISIS, which helped the Joint Terrorism Task Force intercept the teen and prevent the planned church attacks.

According to the FBI, the bureau first learned about Mercurio’s support for ISIS after the teen contacted multiple people with connections to the FBI. In his communications with operatives, Mercurio allegedly admitted that he supported the terrorist organization. Mercurio also allegedly shared various information about the organization, including propaganda, and talked about his plan to leave the United States to join the militant terrorist group. Mercurio also said that he wanted to provide money to ISIS to support the terrorist group’s ongoing efforts.

While Mercurio planned on using his father’s guns in the attack, the teen also had an array of weapons he intended to utilize against church-going Americans. Mercurio allegedly possessed various melee weapons like knives and machetes and wanted to use fire in his planned attack. Mercurio’s planning started with a general target of Coeur d’Alene churches, but the FBI claims the teen honed in on a specific location and day for his attack. The FBI said that the terrorist teen also pledged his loyalty to the international terrorist organization, claiming he wanted to die for ISIS’s cause.

Despite Mercurio’s efforts, the FBI used the information gathered by operatives to foil his attack. On Saturday, April 6th, just a day before the teen intended to attack Coeur d’Alene, the FBI raided Mercurio’s house and found multiple weapons he planned on using in the attack. Mercurio is currently in federal custody, and if convicted for the foiled terrorist plot, the teen could spend 20 years in a federal prison.

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