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Charges: Central Minnesota man's murder plot foiled by BCA agent disguised as hitman

LONG PRAIRIE, Minn. -- A central Minnesota man faces a conspiracy charge after allegedly offering to pay a state agent disguised as a hitman to kill one of his family members.

Robert Thomas Sr., 38, of Grey Eagle is charged with first-degree conspiracy to commit murder, Todd County court documents show.

Per the criminal complaint, in March, an informant told authorities Thomas had paid hitmen $10,000 to kill one of his family members in the summer of 2021, but the killing did not occur.

Local law enforcement and the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension arranged for a meeting between Thomas and an undercover BCA agent playing the role of a hired gun. That meeting took place Thursday in a grocery store parking lot in Long Prairie.

During the meeting, Thomas gave the undercover agent details about his family member, offered to pay the agent $50,000 for the killing and lamented missing his own opportunities to kill his relative.

READ MORE: 1 in 5 U.S. adults say they've had a family member killed by a gun, new study finds

He told the agent he wanted his relative "just gone." The agent gave Thomas a number, and said to think about the killing over Easter weekend. If he wanted to call it off, the agent instructed him, call the number, otherwise the hit would occur Monday morning.

According to the complaint, Thomas said he didn't need to think about it and urged the would-be assassin to get the job done whenever they had the opportunity.

Thomas never called the number and was arrested Monday morning. He allegedly admitted to the plot in a statement to law enforcement. 

Thomas remains in custody and could spend up to 20 years in prison if convicted.

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