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Judge grants request for bond for neo-Nazi in Tampa explosives case

Brandon Russell, 21, faces federal explosives charges in connection with the discovery of bomb-making materials at his Tampa Palms apartment. [Pinellas County Sheriff's Office].
Brandon Russell, 21, faces federal explosives charges in connection with the discovery of bomb-making materials at his Tampa Palms apartment. [Pinellas County Sheriff's Office].
Published Jun. 9, 2017

TAMPA — A judge granted a request Friday from a suspected neo-Nazi to be allowed out of jail while awaiting trial on federal explosives charges.

U.S. Magistrate Judge Thomas McCoun rejected the government's argument that Brandon Russell should be held in jail because he poses a threat to the community or is likely to flee if released.

"I am unable to conclude there is clear and convincing evidence that Defendant represents a threat to any other person," McCoun wrote.

The exact amount of Russell's bond and the conditions of his release would be detailed in a separate order, the judge wrote. That order had not been released as of late Friday.

Russell, 21, faces charges related to the May 19 discovery of bomb-making materials in a Tampa Palms apartment.

Investigators said they found the items during a search after Russell's roommate, Devon Arthurs, shot and killed their other two roommates, Jeremy Himmelman and Andrew Oneschuk.

Arthurs, according to court records, admitted killing the two, saying they were neo-Nazis who disrespected his conversion to Islam. He also said he killed to prevent his roommates from carrying out planned acts of domestic terrorism, court records state.

Elsewhere in the apartment, authorities found copies of Hitler's Mein Kampf and the white nationalist novel, The Turner Diaries. In Russell's bedroom, authorities found a framed photograph of Oklahoma City bomber Timothy McVeigh.

Russell was arrested in the Florida Keys two days after the explosives were found. In the interim, he and another man had bought two guns and 500 rounds of ammunition.

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