Three men living in Germany have been charged for plotting attacks against targets frequented by U.S. nationals, including a U.S. military base.
Fritz Gelowicz and Daniel Martin Schneider, both Muslim converts, and Adem Yilmaz, a Turk, allegedly planned to attack the U.S. military base as well as the Frankfurt airport and night clubs with half a ton of explosives. The men were charged with making preparations for a crime involving explosives and membership in a terrorist organization. Schneider also faces an additional charge of attempted murder for allegedly shooting at police when he was arrested.
The men were arrested in Oberschledorn in September 2007 after an investigation that was triggered when German authorities saw them conducting surveillance on U.S. military installations in Hanau. Police reportedly learned more about the plot from U.S. surveillance of internet communications between Pakistan and Germany.
The men reportedly acquired between 1,500 and 2,000 pounds of concentrated hydrogen peroxide, which is enough to create a blast powerful enough to kill hundreds of people instantly, according to German authorities.
Germany is seeking extradition of a fourth suspect, Attila Selek, who was arrested in Turkey in connection with the plot.
According to German officials, the three suspects are linked to the Islamic Jihad Group (IJG), a splinter organization of the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan, which was designated a Specially Designated Global Terrorist group by the U.S. in May 2005.
All three suspects attended terrorist training camps in Pakistan in 2006, according to German officials. The men allegedly made contacts with members of Al Qaeda during their time training in these camps.
Gelowicz, 28, the alleged leader of the IJG terror cell in Germany, was raised Catholic in Ulm, Germany, and converted to Islam at the age of 18. He was reportedly radicalized at the Multicultural House in Ulm by Tolga Duerbin, a German citizen of Turkish descent who spent nearly four months in a German prison for attending a terrorist training camp in Pakistan. German officials also believe that Gelowicz met with Mohammed Atta, one of the September 11 hijackers.
Daniel Martin Schneider, 22, is from Neunkirchen, Germany and Adem Yilmaz, 29, was born in Turkey but had been living in Germany.
If convicted, each suspect faces a maximum of 10 years in prison.