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October trial postponed for 5 men in Michigan governor plot

Published: Sep. 17, 2021 at 2:33 PM EDT
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GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (AP) - A judge says he would postpone the Oct. 12 trial of five men accused of planning to kidnap Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer.

A new date wasn’t immediately set. But federal Judge Robert Jonker suggested the trial might get pushed to February or March.

Defense lawyers say they need more time to pore over evidence shared by federal prosecutors, especially the work of FBI agents and informants.

The government says the five men were upset over coronavirus restrictions when they conspired to kidnap Whitmer, even scouting her second home in northern Michigan. They’ve pleaded not guilty.

A sixth man, Ty Garbin, pleaded guilty and is expected to be a star witness for prosecutors.

Six suspects were charged in federal court for crimes related to the alleged plot: Brandon Caserta, Barry Croft, Adam Fox, Kaleb Franks, Garbin and Daniel Harris. Garbin reached a plea deal with prosecutors in exchange for his help to prosecutors building a case against the other five.

A federal judge sentenced Garbin to six years in prison last month. The five other suspects charged in federal court face up to life in prison if they are convicted.

Eight other suspects are facing charges in state courts related to the alleged plot. They are accused of providing help to the six federal suspects in carrying out attacks against Whitmer and other state government targets.

These eight men are facing state charges for the alleged plot to kidnap Gov. Gretchen Whitmer...
These eight men are facing state charges for the alleged plot to kidnap Gov. Gretchen Whitmer and attack state government.(source: WJRT)

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