Sami Osmakac was arrested Saturday night near Tampa after federal officials uncovered an alleged terrorist plot in which Osmakac planned to blow up a nightclub and shoot at crowds using high-powered assault weapons.
Osmakac, a naturalized U.S. citizen who was born in the former Yugoslavia, had planned to unleash mass violence in an effort to "terrify" the United States, the feds say.
The FBI was tipped off by an anonymous informant, possibly Osmakac's employer, in September 2011, according to ABC News. The informant said Osmakac was looking to obtain Al-Qaeda flags.
Undercover FBI agents made contact with Osmakac last month, and the 25-year-old unveiled his plan to attack Tampa.
"I want to do something terrifying, like one day, one night, something's going to happen, then six hours later something else," he allegedly told the FBI's undercover agent.
"They['re] like $200 trillion in debt, and after all this money they're spending for homeland security and all this, this is going to be crushing them. This is going to terrify them."
Osmakac apparently hoped to plant a car bomb near a crowded club in a nightlife district. He also planned to set off other car bombs, shoot into the crowd with high-powered guns, and eventually blow himself up. He was arrested while wearing a string of explosives across his chest.
We Believe Local Journalism is Critical to the Life of a City
Engaging with our readers is essential to Miami New Times's mission. Make a financial contribution or sign up for a newsletter, and help us keep telling Miami's stories with no paywalls.
Support Our Journalism
The FBI agent supplied Osmakac with guns and explosives. Unbeknownst to the would-be terrorist, the weapons had been rendered unusable.
"We all have to die, so why not die the Islamic way?'" Osmakac told the agent.
Federal authorities also say Osmakac made a video shortly before he planned to carry out the attack explaining his motives.