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Press Release

Group With Ties to Racially Motivated Violent Extremists Including two Former Marines Facing Additional Charge of Targeting Energy Facilities

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Eastern District of North Carolina

RALEIGH, N.C. – Today, Paul James Kryscuk, 35, Liam Collins, 21, Jordan Duncan, 26, and Joseph Maurino, 22, were charged via a third superseding indictment obtained in the Eastern District of North Carolina. Collins and Duncan are former Marines assigned previously to Camp Lejeune in Jacksonville, North Carolina.  The defendants are charged with conspiracy to damage the property of an energy facility in the United States.

According to the indictment, Collins, Kryscuk, Duncan, and Maurino researched, discussed, and reviewed at length a previous attack on the power grid by an unknown group.  The group in that attack used assault-style rifles in an attempt to explode a power substation. Between 2017 and 2020, Kryscuk manufactured firearms while Collins stole military gear, including magazines for assault-style rifles and had them delivered to the other defendants.  During that time, Duncan gathered a library of information, some military-owned, regarding firearms, explosives, and nerve toxins and shared that information with Kryscuk and Collins.

The indictment also alleges that the defendants discussed using homemade Thermite, a combination of metal powder and metal oxide which burns at over 4000°F to burn through and destroy power transformers.  In mid-2020, Collins asked others to each purchase 50 pounds of Tannerite, a binary explosive containing aluminum powder and oxidizers, and can be used to make Thermite.  In October 2020, a handwritten list of approximately one dozen intersections and places in Idaho and surrounding states was discovered in Kryscuk’s possession, including intersections and/or places containing a transformer, substations, or other component of the power grid for the northwest United States.  If destroyed, the damage caused could exceed $100,000.

The defendants have also been charged, in previous indictments, with conspiring to manufacture, transport, and sell hard to obtain firearms and firearm parts in a manner that would hide these purchases from the federal government. 

The previous indictments allege that Collins and Kryscuk were members of and made multiple posts on the “Iron March” forum, a gathering point for young neo-Nazis to organize and recruit for extremist organizations, until the forum was closed in late 2017.  Collins and Kryscuk met through the forum and expanded their group using an encrypted messaging application as an alternate means of communication outside of the forum.  Collins and Kryscuk recruited additional members, including Duncan, Hermanson, and Maurino, and conducted training, including a live-fire training in the desert near Boise.  From video footage recorded by the members during the training, Kryscuk, Duncan, and others produced a montage video of their training.  In the video, the participants are seen firing short barrel rifles and other assault-type rifles, and the end of the propaganda video shows the four participants outfitted in AtomWaffen masks giving the “Heil Hitler” sign, beneath the image of a black sun, a Nazi symbol.  The last frame bears the phrase, “Come home white man.”  Prior to their arrests, Collins and Duncan had recently relocated from North Carolina and Texas, respectively, to Boise to be near Kryscuk.

If convicted of all counts against them, the defendants face up to 40 years imprisonment.

An indictment is merely an accusation.  The defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty.

G. Norman Acker, III, Acting U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of North Carolina, made the announcement. The Naval Criminal Investigative Service, the Federal Bureau of Investigation field offices in Salt Lake City and Charlotte with assistance from field offices in Boston, New York, and Newark, the Boise Police Department, the United States Postal Inspection Service, Homeland Security Investigations, and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives, are investigating the case.  Assistant U.S. Attorneys from the Eastern District of North Carolina are prosecuting the case for the government with assistance from Assistant United States Attorneys for the District of Idaho, District of New Jersey, Eastern District of New York, the District of Rhode Island and attorneys from the National Security Division.

Related court documents and information can be found on the website of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of North Carolina or on PACER by searching for Case No. 7:20-CR-167-M.

Updated August 20, 2021

National Security