A Wisconsin man pleaded guilty Wednesday to a reduced charge for his role in a foiled plot to kidnap Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, handing another victory for prosecutors who have viewed the plot as domestic terrorism.

Michigan prosecutors charged Brian Higgins, 54, with aiding in the conspiracy by staking out Whitmer’s vacation home. As part of a plea agreement, he admitted in County Antrim court that he attempted to provide material support to terrorism and agreed to cooperate with prosecutors, state attorney general Dana Nessel said in a statement.

Higgins, who faces up to five years in prison, will testify against four men who will stand trial on related charges later this year.

Michael Naughton, a lawyer on Higgins’ list, did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Prosecutors initially charged Higgins with providing material support for a terrorist act, along with the four men who are also charged with firearms violations. The remaining defendants could face 20 years if convicted on the terrorism charge alone.

They are among more than a dozen suspects who were arrested in connection with the plot in October 2020. Last year, seven men were found guilty and sentenced for related crimes. Two others were acquitted.

In previous cases in Jackson County and federal court, prosecutors argued that the alleged conspirators were affiliated with right-wing militia groups that opposed public health measures Whitmer, a Democrat, imposed during the early days of the covid pandemic.

The group planned to break into Whitmer’s vacation home, kidnap her, and take her to gunpoint to «trial» her on treason charges, all as part of an effort to spark a «second American revolution» ahead of the contentious 2020 presidential election. the prosecutors said.

Adam Fox, the alleged ringleader, and Barry Croft Jr. were sentenced to 16 and more than 19 years, respectively, after being found guilty of domestic terrorism, conspiracy to kidnap and other crimes in a second federal trial.

Two others tried with them were found not guilty in April. The same jury failed to reach a verdict for Fox and Croft, resulting in a mistrial.

Two other men, Ty Garbin and Kaleb Franks, have pleaded guilty and cooperated with federal prosecutors. They were sentenced to two and a half years and four years in prison, respectively.

Three other men were sentenced to between seven and 12 years after they were found guilty in state court for playing supporting roles in the plot.

Nessel, the attorney general, said she herself was among the potential targets of a man who federal prosecutors say threatened to kill state employees who are Jewish.

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