The FBI says a man arrested in Texas believed blowing up Amazon data centers would "kill off about 70% of the Internet"—and he planned to start with one in Virginia. The agency says the suspect, 28-year-old Seth Aaron Pendley was arrested after he bought what he believed were explosive devices from an undercover agent, the BBC reports. The FBI says Pendley boasted about being present at the Jan. 6 Capitol attack and was reported by a concerned citizen two days later after he posted on a militia forum about his plan to "conduct a little experiment." He used the name " Dionysus" online, but the FBI managed to uncover his email address and real-world identity.
According to court papers, Pendley discussed his plan with an FBI informant, saying he believed the attack would anger the "oligarchy" by destroying servers used by the FBI and the CIA. He was arrested April 8 after taking boxes of what he thought were plastic explosives from the undercover agent and placing them in his vehicle, the FBI says. "We are indebted to the concerned citizen who came forward to report the defendant’s alarming online rhetoric," Prerak Shah, the acting US attorney for the Northern District of Texas, said in a statement, per the New York Times. "In flagging his posts to the FBI, this individual may have saved the lives of a number of tech workers." Pendley could face up to 20 years in prison if found guilty of malicious attempt to destroy a building with an explosive. (Read more FBI stories.)