Wednesday, October 20, 2010

South Park Hatin’ Internet Jihadi to Plead Guilty

Via (Danger Room) -

Matt Parker and Trey Stone can exhale now. Zachary Adam Chesser, the 20-year old who threatened the two South Park creators online for depicting the prophet Mohammed in a bear costume, will plead guilty to supporting terrorism this afternoon in a Virginia court.

A prolific blogger, Chesser used handles like Abu Talhah and Abu Talhah al-Amrikee to encourage terror-sympathizers “to actually go and fight against the disbelievers” on a variety of blogs and message boards. Acting on his impulses, he attempted twice this year to travel to Somalia to join the Qaeda-affiliated al-Shabaab, but his online threats landed him on a no-fly list. FBI agents arrested him in July.

Now the Washington Post reports that Chesser will plead guilty this afternoon to providing material support to terrorists, making threats and other charges that could land him up to 15 years in jail. His wife was also charged with making false statements to investigators.


One thing Chesser isn’t charged with: threatening Parker and Stone. After South Park aired an April episode featuring a (never-shown) Mohammed in a bear costume, Chesser posted to RevolutionMuslim, "We have to warn Matt and Trey that what they are doing is stupid, and they will probably wind up like Theo van Gogh for airing this show," a reference to the Dutch filmmaker murdered in 2004 for making a documentary critical of Islam. "This is not a threat, but a warning of the reality of what will likely happen to them."

That and other statements earned Chesser frequent opprobrium and ridicule by the Jawa Report bloggers, who’ve trailblazed mockery of open-source jihadis. The Jawa post today about Chesser is comparatively understated, predicting that during the plea hearing today, “the ‘freakishly intelligent’ Mr. Chesser will continue to overestimate his ability to ‘handle’ the federal agents he is dealing with, and will suffer further negative consequences as a result.” Yesterday, they weren’t as gentle with Mrs. Chesser, and celebrated news of the forthcoming guilty plea with an animated .gif of a dancing MC Hammer.

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