Neo-Nazis Brandon Russell, Sarah Clendaniel Arrested for Plot to Blow Up Baltimore Power Grid

A neo-Nazi couple recently out of prison may soon be back behind bars after they allegedly blabbed to an undercover informant last month that they planned to sabotage power stations in Maryland.

Brandon Russell, 27, and Sarah Clendaniel, 34, are accused of plotting to shoot up five substations that serve the Baltimore area—an attack Clendaniel told a federal informant would be “legendary” if pulled off, the Washington Post reported, citing a criminal complaint.

Russell and Clendaniel are facing up to 20 years in prison for the foiled attack plan. Their first court appearance will be on Monday in Baltimore federal court.

Russell, a neo-Nazi leader who founded the far-right group Atomwaffen, had been jailed since 2018 for keeping lethal bomb-making materials in his apartment. Atomwaffen has been known to threaten journalists, African American churches and Jewish organizations. Clendaniel was locked up in a different prison for a spate of convenience store robberies where she wielded a machete and demanded cash and cigarettes.

Despite being in separate facilities, court filings revealed that Russell and Clendaniel hit it off while incarcerated and allegedly teamed up to attack power stations once out.

The FBI called the couple “racially or ethnically motivated extremists,” who were “taking steps to fulfill their threats and further their extremist goals,” reported CBS Baltimore.

Part of the couple’s devious plan was to hit the power stations after a winter storm “when most people are using max electricity,” prosecutors said. CBS reported Clendaniel said their goals were to “lay this city to waste,” referencing Baltimore.

Prosecutors said Russell wanted to target transformers specifically because they’re “custom made and could take almost a year to replace.”

Russell allegedly described the attack as “the greatest thing somebody can do.” His girlfriend, apparently dying of kidney disease, allegedly told an informant she just wanted “to accomplish something worthwhile” before she died.

Before trying to carry out the attack, prosecutors say Clendaniel left a statement that referenced Hitler, the Unabomber, and a Norwegian mass killer, adding that she would sacrifice “everything” for “her people.”

“If we can pull off what I’m hoping … this would be legendary,” Clendaniel told the informant on Jan. 29, the criminal complaint says.

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