Homegrown Terrorist


May 27, 2011

He is an American extremist who was radicalized in prison and determined to kill innocent citizens and dedicated public servants. The FBI and its partners were equally determined to stop him.


Audio Transcript

Mollie Halpern: He is an American extremist who was radicalized in prison. Michael Finton, who calls himself Talib Islam, was determined to kill innocent citizens and dedicated public servants. The FBI and its partners were equally determined to stop him.

Mark Hill: We got a homegrown terrorist off the streets. He doesn’t have the ability now to kill or injure anybody.

Halpern: I’m Mollie Halpern of the FBI, and this is “Gotcha.” Finton plotted to bomb a federal courthouse and the office of a U.S. congressman in Springfield, Illinois in 2009. He confided in a man he thought was an al Qaeda operative, but who was actually an undercover law enforcement officer. Special Agent Mark Hill worked the case….

Hill: His thing was to kill federal employees. He did talk about innocent children and women, but it was justified for that mission.

Halpern: Finton parked a truck he believed contained a bomb outside of the courthouse. The bomb was actually fake. After Finton tried to remotely detonate it, the FBI’s Joint Terrorism Task Force arrested him. Finton was sentenced to 28 years in prison.

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