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The trial date for Christopher Cornell, the Ohio man accused of plotting to bomb the U.S. Capitol and shoot federal workers as they fled, was postponed Tuesday after prosecutors said they intended to use classified evidence.
Cornell, 20, of Green Township, near Cincinnati, was arrested Jan. 14 after a five-month FBI sting that authorities say uncovered a plot to set up an ISIS cell in the U.S. Cornell, a Muslim convert who goes by the name Raheel Mahrus Ubaydah, pleaded not guilty last month to attempted murder of government officials, solicitation to commit a crime of violence and possession of a firearm in connection with a crime of violence.
In documents filed Tuesday in U.S. District Court in Cincinnati, federal prosecutors were granted a protective order sealing "classified information, which the United States anticipates will arise during this case." Senior U.S. District Judge Sandra Beckwith set a revised status conference date for April 27.
According to an FBI affidavit included as part of the indictment, Cornell made it clear early in his dealings with an FBI informer that he hoped to create an ISIS cell in the U.S., telling the undercover agent in a text message: "I believe we should meet up and make our own group in alliance with the Islamic State here and plan operations ourselves."
He was arrested after he bought two M-15 semi-automatic rifles and about 600 rounds of ammunition as the undercover operative watched, according to the indictment.