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Oklahoma City Bank Explosion Plot Foiled by Undercover Operation

Oklahoma City Bank Explosion Plot Foiled by Undercover Operation

Varnell is charged with attempting to use explosives to destroy a building in interstate commerce and if convicted, could face up to 20 years in federal prison with a mandatory minimum of five years in prison.

"At approximately 6:30 p.m., Varnell actively participated in building what he believed to be a 1,000-pound [Vehicle Borne Improvised Explosive Device] constructed with ammonium nitrate/ fuel oil, detonating cord, cast boosters, dynamite and blasting caps", the affidavit said.

Varnell helped the undercover agent assemble the "device" and loaded it onto a van that he believed was stolen, before driving it from El Reno to the alley beside BancFirst.

Varnell told the undercover agent that he initially wanted to blow up the Federal Reserve Building in Washington, D.C. - eight blocks from the White House.

When investigators learned of Varnell's plot, an undercover agent reached out to him and posed as a person who could assist with the plan, the release stated.

The bank he chose as a target - the downtown branch of BancFirst, Oklahoma's largest state-chartered bank - is about a half-mile from the site of that attack. Varnell's actions were monitored closely for months as the plot developed.




Jerry Drake Varnell, of Sayre, was arrested on Saturday over the plot in Oklahoma City. It is chilling to think that a sympathizer of Timothy McVeigh would want to act on hate, as a tribute to the 1995 Oklahoma City bombing, the deadliest terrorist attack on American soil before September 11.

"I'm determined to bust some skulls", the protest cites Varnell's writings. The informant backed up these claims with screenshots of conversations with Varnell.

Varnell allegedly referenced the movie "Fight Club" when he discussed wanting to "take down a government facility or other structures".

US Attorney Mark Yancey said at the same press conference on Monday that Varnell was in the custody of the US Marshals Service ahead of an anticipated appearance before federal court in Oklahoma City on Monday afternoon. When asked why he switched to BancFirst instead of the government building he originally planned, he said, "Well I don't wanna kill a bunch of people", the complaint said.

Varnell was arrested at around 1 a.m. local time Saturday morning, after constructing what he believed to be a bomb with the undercover Federal Bureau of Investigation agent, driving to the BancFirst building in a van he believed stolen, and making repeated attempts to detonate it, according to the U.S. Attorney's office.

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