Did The FBI Get Confused And Arrest One Of Its Own Informants For Helping Create One Of Its Own Plots?

from the wtf? dept

For a few years now, we've been writing about how the FBI has been arresting a ton of people for "terrorism" who were really guilty of little more than being gullible and naive and pushed by FBI undercover agents and informants into taking part in a plot that wouldn't exist but for the FBI itself. These so-called own plots seem to be a huge part of what the FBI does these days. Somewhat ridiculously, courts have (mostly) allowed these, claiming that if, eventually, the accused person expressed some support for terrorism or terrorist groups, it shouldn't be considered entrapment. But, over and over again, you see cases where it's clearly the FBI doing not just the majority of the plotting, but also pushing and pushing targets to "join" the plot, even when they show sustained resistance. The more details you read about these cases, the more ridiculous they get.

However, in just the latest example of this -- the arrest of Erick Hendricks for supposedly trying to recruit people to carry out attacks for ISIS -- there's been something of an odd twist. Hendricks claims he has no idea why he was arrested because he's been an FBI informant for years, helping the FBI find other gullible souls to entrap in these "own plots." As Marcy Wheeler notes, it's possible the FBI lost track of one of its own informants and ended up having him "caught" in one of the plots where he thought he was helping the FBI find possible terrorists. Wouldn't that be something.
Has the FBI simply lost track of who are real and who are the people it is paying to play a role? Or is it possible someone from another agency, claiming to be FBI, recruited Hendricks (don’t laugh! That’s one potential explanation for Anwar al-Awlaki’s curious ties to US law enforcement, a story that wends its way through a related mosque in VA)?

Sure, maybe Hendricks is making all this up (at the very least, it may necessitate the BoP to protect him in prison since he has now publicly claimed to be a narc). But FBI’s network of informants sure is getting confusing.
Either way, if Hendricks really was an informant, it appears that the "plots" he was engaged in may have been all confidential informants or undercover agents (and possibly one mentally disturbed internet troll).

This sounds like the plot to a potentially entertaining movie -- but back in the real world, it seems pretty fucked up. And it's yet another reminder of just how stupid these FBI "own plots" really are. It doesn't seem to really be about keeping people safe from attacks. Instead it seems to be about figuring out ways to push gullible and naive people to agree to do something stupid so that the FBI can get headlines for "keeping us safe" from attacks that would never actually happen.

Filed Under: erick hendricks, fbi, informant, own plot, terrorism, undercover


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  1. identicon
    I.T. Guy, 15 Aug 2016 @ 9:58am

    "This sounds like the plot to a potentially entertaining movie"

    Sounds more like it should be the next Pink Panther movie.

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