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6 Arrested In New Jersey Terror Plot

Six men were arrested early Tuesday on charges they plotted to attack the Fort Dix Army base and "kill as many soldiers as possible," federal authorities said.

The six were scheduled to appear in U.S. District Court in Camden later Tuesday to face charges of conspiracy to kill U.S. servicemen, said Michael Drewniak, a spokesman for the U.S. Attorney's Office in New Jersey. Five of them lived in Cherry Hill, he said.

At the time of the arrests, the plot was in the planning stages and no attack was imminent, CBS News has learned. Officials said this is more of a "homegrown" plot with no ties to al Qaeda or any other international terrorist organization, CBS News reports.

Of the six being charged, four are from the former Yugoslavia, one is Turkish, and the other is Jordanian. Three of the men are illegal aliens, and just one is a U.S. citizen, CBS News reports.

The men were described as "Islamic radicals," U.S. Attorney's Office spokesman Greg Reinert said.

A law enforcement official said that the men had lived in the United States for some time and were arrested as part of a joint federal and local investigation.

The official spoke on condition of anonymity because documents in the case remain sealed.

(CBS)
The arrests were first reported by WNBC-TV in New York. The station, citing an anonymous law enforcement official, said the group discussed attacking other military installations, including Dover Air Force Base in Delaware and Fort Monmouth in New Jersey before settling on Fort Dix.

The Star-Ledger of Newark reported on its Web site that the men had agreed to buy AK-47 assault rifles from an arms dealer who was secretly cooperating with the FBI. The Star-Ledger report cited a law enforcement source granted anonymity because the source was not authorized to speak about the arrest.

The newspaper reported that the men had videotaped their training sessions in the Poconos. The video eventually led to their arrests as the men brought the tape to a retail store seeking to have it burned to a DVD, the newspaper reported, citing its source.

A store employee watched the tape and informed the FBI, the newspaper reported.

After finding out about the video, the FBI launched its investigation and watched as the group surveilled various military bases. The men went to the Poconos to shoot weapons and played paintball in New Jersey. The men also talked about how soldiers could be killed at the annual Army-Navy football game, CBS News reports.

Jerri Williams, spokeswoman for the FBI in Philadelphia, said U.S. Attorney Christopher Christie of the U.S. Attorney's Office in Newark and J.P. Weis, special agent in charge of the FBI in Philadelphia, have scheduled a news conference at 2:30 p.m. at the U.S. District Courthouse in Camden.

Christie's office previously brought, and won, a similar post-9/11 terrorism case against a British national named Hemant Lakhani, who plotted to obtain shoulder-fired missiles to shoot at airliners, CBS News Investigative Unit producer Phil Hirschkorn reports.

Fort Dix is used to train soldiers, particularly reservists. It also housed refugees from Kosovo in 1999.