Militia Members Guilty in Bomb Plot

Associated Press/May 22, 2002

Sacramento -- Two militia members were convicted of plotting to blow up two propane tanks in a Sacramento suburb to try to topple the federal government.

Kevin Patterson, 44, and Charles Kiles, 52, were found guilty Tuesday of conspiracy to use a weapon of mass destruction and conspiracy to use a destructive device. The attack never took place.

The men face up to life in prison. No sentencing dates were set.

It was the second trial for the former members of the San Joaquin County Militia on charges they intended to blow up the 12-million-gallon tanks in suburban Elk Grove. The first 12-member jury deadlocked six months ago with 11 jurors voting for conviction.

Prosecutors contend Patterson and Kiles hoped to cause enough civil unrest to result in the toppling of the federal government.

A third man, Donald Rudolph, founder and former commander of the militia, pleaded guilty in January 2001 to concealing his knowledge of the plot and agreed to cooperate with prosecutors.

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