Greenbelt, MD – Three alleged members of a violent white supremacist group called “The Base” were arrested by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) on Thursday.
The Base is a neo-Nazi paramilitary extremist group that runs training camps for militant followers, according to Vice.
The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Maryland put out a press release about the arrests and unsealed the complaint filed on Jan. 14 after the suspects were taken into custody on Jan. 16.
The complaint does not reference an upcoming gun rights rally in Richmond, Virginia on Jan 20., but a law enforcement official told ABC News that the three were suspected of planning to travel to the rally “in anticipation of a possible race war.”
Canadian authorities had been looking for Canadian Army Reserve Corporal Master Patrik Mathews, an active combat engineer, since August when he disappeared after the Winnipeg Free Press exposed the fact he was recruiting for The Base.
The affidavit filed in support of the criminal complaint said that the 27-year-old Mathews crossed into the United States illegally on Aug. 19, 2019 near the Manitoba-Minnesota order, according to the press release.
Prosecutors said 33-year-old Brian Mark Lemley, Jr. of Elkton and Newark, Delaware and 19-year-old William Garfield Bilbrough IV, of Denton, drove from Maryland to Michigan to pick up Mathews on Aug. 30, 2019.
Lemley was previously a U.S. Army cavalry scout, the press release said.
All three men returned to Maryland together the next day.
On Nov. 2, 2019, the three men drove from Virginia to the Eastern Shore of Maryland to take Bilbrough home to Denton.
Then Lemley and Mathews continued to Elkton where Lemley got a hotel room for Mathews for one night, the press release said.
The affidavit said that Lemley and Mathews drove to Delaware the next day and rented an apartment in Newark where they lived together until they were arrested.
Authorities believe that in December of 2019, the three men tried to manufacture a controlled substance called DMT together in the Delaware apartment.
That same month, Lemley and Mathews used an upper receiver ordered by Lemley to build a rifle capable of firing multiple rounds with one trigger press, the press release said.
The affidavit said that Lemley, Mathews, and Bilbrough discussed The Base’s activities and other members of the group.
In January, Lemley and Mathews bought 1,650 rounds of 5.56- and 6.5-mm ammo in Delaware and then went to a gun range in Maryland to shoot the automatic rifle they’d built, according to the affidavit.
While in Maryland, they retrieved body arm carriers and additional ammunition from Lemley’s Elkton residence, the press release said.
Prosecutors said Lemley and Bilbrough have been charged with transporting and harboring aliens and conspiring to do so.
Lemley is also charged with transporting a machine gun and disposing of a firearm and ammunition to an alien unlawfully present in the United States, the press release said.
Mathew has been charged with transporting a firearm and ammunition with intent to commit a felony and being an alien in possession of a firearm and ammunition.