'Proud Boys Member' Is Arrested During FBI Raid In Queens After 'Trying To Organize An Armed Caravan To Washington, D.C.
Eduard Florea, 40, was arrested on Tuesday afternoon in Middle Village, Queens. After publicly posting plans to fly to Washington, D.C., the FBI launched a raid on his house. Of armed online demonstrators. Since they turned up in an armored vehicle, Florea surrendered to federal authorities.
He was charged with theft of ammunition as a convicted criminal. Florea is said to have links to the white nationalist organization Proud Boys and has been convicted, according to news reports of threatening to kill people in the past.
Federal authorities captured a New York City man after he was suspected of planning to coordinate another terrorist strike on the U.S. Capitol in the aftermath of the deadly protests last week. On Tuesday, after the FBI's Joint Terrorism Task Force descended on his home on Elliot Avenue and 76th Street in Middle Village, Queens, Eduard Florea, 40, was taken into custody.
Credit: CBS NY
Florea is not thought to have engaged in the uprising last Wednesday, but had reportedly addressed preparations on social media for further violence, police say.
His detention came in the wake of a crackdown by federal and local law enforcement authorities vowing to punish those involved in the militant mob or any attempts to threaten next week's inauguration of Joe Biden.
CBS New York confirmed that Florea, who was reported to have connections to the white nationalist organization Proud Boys, had reportedly posted messages online saying he wanted to move with a group of armed demonstrators to Washington. It is uncertain where he had posted the threats exactly or whether he had tried to attract participants for the supposed tour.
The news station announced that Florea, a father of two, was accused of being a convicted felon in possession of munitions. Records reveal that the man has attempted to kill people in the past, according to law enforcement reports, and was arrested in 2014 in Staten Island on a firearms charge.
Witnesses told the news channel that Florea voluntarily surrendered to federal authorities on Wednesday and was put in an armed FBI truck. Photos of the scene captured by CBS showed Florea in the air with his hands after being approached in broad daylight by feds on the suburban route.
'They took him out, his wife, two children and we saw weapons come out and some laptops,' neighbor Larry Gianbalvo told the news outlet.
'I'm not a weapons expert. They weren't small. They were fairly big.'
Florea was identified by neighbors as a "loner" and a "big tech guy" working with computers.
'He was a quiet guy,' neighbor Jackelyn told the New York Daily News. 'Didn't socialize much, always stayed to himself.'