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Batavia man accused of plotting crime spree
A Batavia native is accused of trying to recruit people to blow up government buildings, rob banks and kill law enforcement officers.
Robert James Talbot Jr. was living in Katy, Texas when he was arrested in March.
The 38-year-old is charged with attempted interference with commerce by robbery, solicitation to commit a crime of violence and possession of an explosive material, specifically C4.
His arrest comes at the end of an eight-month undercover investigation by the FBI Joint Terrorism Task Force.
Talbot allegedly created a Facebook page titled "American Insurgent Movement" (AIM).
According to federal investigators Talbot made several postings on the page between January 30, 2014 and February 9, 2014, seeking people interested in "walking away from your life...to stop the regime."
Talbot allegedly described that page as:
"a Pre-Constitutionalist Community that offers those who seek True patriotism and are looking for absolute Freedom by doing the Will of God. Who want to restore America Pre-Constitutionally and look forward to stopping the Regime with action by bloodshed."
On March 15, 2014, Talbot allegedly posted again to the page:
"In a few weeks me and my team are goin active for Operation Liberty....I will not be able to post no more. We will be the revolution, things will happen nation wide or in the states. They will call us many names and spin things around on media. Just remember we fight to stop Marxism, liberalism, Central banking Cartels, and the New World Order. I will try to find someone to take over this community page, but most of the guys who are admins are part of my unit. I will have a website up in 2 months....The funding is unlimited since the banking cartel will be forced to fund our movements."
Talbot is accused of conducting surveillance of multiple financial institutions in the Houston area, monitoring the movements of people entering and exiting the banks.
Talbot also allegedly followed an armored car, watching how personnel exited the vehicle and whether the carrier was picking up or dropping off bags.
Investigators say on March 22, 2014, Talbot sent $500 as a down payment for the explosive devices he had requested.
Two days later, Talbot allegedly claimed to have quit his job and was preparing for an upcoming armored car robbery.
While en route to allegedly conduct the armored car robbery, Talbot was arrested and taken into custody by the FBI Houston Division Special Weapons and Tactics team.
If convicted, he faces up to a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison and a possible $250,000 fine for the attempted robbery, as well as another 10 years in prison and $100,000 fine for each of the remaining charges.