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Pictures taken during a tour by Brandon Russell in 2015 including at Buckingham Palace

Pictures taken during a tour by Brandon Russell in 2015 including at Buckingham Palace

A jailed American neo-Nazi leader has boasted that he met the banned British fascist group National Action outside Buckingham Palace.

Brandon Russell, who was jailed for five years after police found bomb-making materials in his flat, is a co-founder of Atomwaffen, an extremist network whose young followers have been implicated in a string of murders.

National Action, Britain’s most prominent far-right terrorist group, targets youth, promotes race war and tweeted after the murder of Jo Cox: “Only 649 MPs to go.”

An image on Atomwaffen’s website

An image on Atomwaffen’s website

The discovery of a transatlantic alliance between young Hitler enthusiasts comes days after Mark Rowley, Britain’s most senior counterterrorism officer, warned that violent British white supremacists were starting to make international connections.

Russell used his nickname “Odin” on the neo-Nazi Iron March forum to describe his tour of Britain with National Action in July 2015. He stopped at sensitive locations such as Buckingham Palace where Atomwaffen and National Action members posed with their respective flags. A third flag unfurled there represented Iron March.

National Action’s flag incorporates the symbol of Sir Oswald Mosley’s Union Movement in which his son Max, now a privacy campaigner, was a prominent activist.

Russell took photographs during his British tour of a display cabinet showing Sir Oswald and his fascist propaganda at the Imperial War Museum in London. He posted the images on Iron March. After the party visited the Houses of Parliament, National Action blogged: “It was good to see the faces of the scum leaving the HOP because they’ll be easier to recognise for the day of the rope.”

Russell met members of National Action, including Ben Raymond, its co-founder, just after one of the organisation’s supporters, Zack Davies, had been convicted for trying to behead an Asian dentist in Mold, north Wales.

Atomwaffen, which means “atomic weapon” in German, was formed in 2015 and is estimated to have only 80 members scattered around the United States. The extremist group was co-founded by housemates Russell, now 22, and Devon Arthurs in Tampa, Florida, in 2015. Russell was sentenced to five years in prison in January after police found bomb-making material at their home. Arthurs told authorities that Russell had been planning to blow up a nuclear power plant near Miami.

Police stumbled on Russell’s home-made explosives when they were called to the flat last May after Arthurs, 18, shot dead their housemates Andrew Oneschuk, 18, and Jeremy Himmelman, 22.

Samuel Woodward, 20, a supporter of Atomwaffen, has been arrested over the alleged hate crime murder of Blaze Bernstein, 19, a former classmate who was gay and Jewish, in Orange County, California, in January.

In December, Nicholas Giampa, 17, who was influenced by Atomwaffen’s online literature, allegedly shot dead his girlfriend’s parents in Reston, Virginia, after they convinced her to ditch him for being a neo-Nazi. Atomwaffen was banned this week by YouTube “due to multiple or severe violations of YouTube’s policy prohibiting hate speech”.

Mr Rowley, who is to retire as assistant commissioner of the Met, gave a parting warning on far-Right terror. “It’s a significant part of the threat and it’s growing,” he told LBC, adding that 18 months ago the Home Secretary proscribed National Action as a terrorist organisation. “What that means in the UK is that we have a home-grown neo-Nazi white supremacist organisation with terrorist purposes operating here,” he said. “They also are starting to make connections internationally. That’s a matter of real concern.”

Behind the story

National Action was proscribed as a terrorist organisation by Amber Rudd, the home secretary, in December 2016 after the murderer of Jo Cox gave its slogan “Death To Traitors, Freedom For Britain” as his name in court.

The research group Hope Not Hate claims the organisation has continued to operate despite being outlawed: “A core of National Action supporters simply ignored the ban and continued as before, moving their organisation underground and communicating clandestinely using a wide array of secure methods. Others decided to set up front organisations to continue the group’s work but circum-venting the law.”

National Action was co-founded in 2014 by Ben Raymond, 28, a former double-glazing salesman from Bognor Regis, and Alex Davies, 21, from Swansea.

Scottish Dawn, a front group created by Raymond, appeared on the streets in Scotland last year but has also now been banned.
The Times

The self-proclaimed neo-Nazi Brandon Russell, 22, arrested at the Key Largo Burger King last May after bomb-making materials were found in his car, was sentenced by Senior U.S. District Judge Susan Bucklew last week to five years in a low-security federal prison followed by three years of supervised probation.

At the time of Russell’s arrest, he was found to be carrying fuses, an M&P 15 Sport 2 semi-automatic assault-style rifle, a Savage Arms Axis .223 caliber hunting rifle with a scope and 500 rounds of ammunition.

Directly following the incident, Russell pleaded not-guilty but then changed his plea to guilty in September on federal charges of possessing bomb-making materials, and for improperly storing such materials. The two charges carry a maximum sentence of 11 years.

Russell’s lawyer, Ian Goldstein, asked the court for leniency in sentencing citing his client’s clean record and immaturity as reasons.

In a memorandum, he wrote, “As a 22 year old former college student and member of the armed forces, the defendant has seen the future he once hoped for evaporate before his eyes. He has learned more in this past year than in his prior 21 years combined, and has demonstrated both remorse and a desire to change.”

He said that this would be Russell’s first and only criminal conviction.

Russell was arrested about 48 hours after he discovered the bodies of his two roommates, Jeremy Himmelman, 22, and Andrew Oneschuk, 18, upon returning home from duty with the Army’s National Guard.

The fourth roommate, Devon Arthurs, 18, confessed to killing the two men for a making fun of his recent turn to Islam.

While officers were searching the shared apartment, bomb technicians recognized a “white cake-like” material in a cooler as hexamethylene triperoxide diamine, or HMTD, in the attached garage. Russell admitted the material was his, prosecutors say.

Police found radioactive materials belonging to Russell, as well as white supremacy propaganda and a framed photo of Timothy McVeigh, the Oklahoma City federal building bomber.

They found enough explosive materials for the FBI to file the criminal complaint against Russell. Russell said the material was used to launch model rockets which he did as an engineering student.

Russell told the police at the murder scene he was going to visit his father, but instead, picked up a fellow neo-Nazi, who has been identified as William James Tschantre, of Bradenton, and headed toward the Keys. The two stopped to purchase the guns along the way.

It’s unclear what Russell’s intentions were in the Keys.

Arthurs, however, incriminated Russell by saying he planned to target Turkey Point, the nuclear plant near the entrance to the Keys — a seemingly appropriate target for atomwaffen, the neo-Nazi group Russell created and whose name means “atomic weapon” in German.

Goldstein dismissed the Turkey Point matter as “a red herring, a fabrication created by Devon Arthurs in order to justify his own criminal behavior.”

Tschantre told police that he and Russell had no specific destination in mind and had no plans to hurt anyone or do any harm.

Keys News

TAMPA, Fla. (AP) – A neo-Nazi group leader who stockpiled explosive material in the Florida apartment where a friend killed two roommates has been sentenced to five years in federal prison.

The sentence, handed down Tuesday in a Tampa federal court against 22-year-old Brandon Russell, was less than the 11 years sought by prosecutors.

The judge said it was a difficult case because she was concerned that Russell was capable of making bombs but was also worried that he might become involved with other neo-Nazis while in prison.

Devon Arthurs, Russell’s friend, awaits trial in state court on charges of murdering their two roommates, Andrew Oneschuk and Jeremy Himmelman.

Russell wasn’t charged in the May 2017 killings, which exposed the four roommates’ membership in Atomwaffen Division, an obscure neo-Nazi group that formed on the internet.

WTSP