Seth Aaron Pendley of Texas appeared in court this weekend after being apprehended by the FBI for conspiring to blow up the internet. *Checks notes* no, that is what it says. The idea was to take down an Amazon Web Services (AWS) data centre in order to free the USA from "the oligarchy" that he believes to be currently controlling his beloved country.
Pendley's plans were flagged on encrypted communication service Signal, where he began outlining his plot to "kill of [sic] about 70 percent of the internet" under the username 'Dionysus'—the dual natured Greek God of fertility and wine, and patron of the arts.
A statement (opens in new tab) from the United States Department of Justice says when approached by one user who asked what outcome he wished for, "death" was Pendley's answer.
A user who came forward to alert the authorities ended up working with the FBI to introduce the suspect to an undercover agent. Cut to April 8, Fort Worth, Texas. The FBI agent posed as an arms dealer in a meeting with the culprit and, according to Conan Daily's (opens in new tab) sources, even showed him how to arm and detonate the C-4 plastic explosives he'd just bought.
The second Pendley placed them in his vehicle, he was arrested and reportedly confessed on the spot.
Pendley faces up to 20 years in federal prison, should he be convicted.