Florida man negotiating plea deal in plot to bomb Miami-area synagogue


(JTA) — A South Florida man charged with plotting to bomb a Miami-area synagogue and Jewish school is negotiating a plea agreement, his defense attorney is saying.

James Medina, 41, has been negotiating with prosecutors on a proposed guilty plea, the Associated Press reported, citing court papers filed last week. He originally had pleaded not guilty.

Medina, 40, a convert to Islam from Hollywood, was arrested by the FBI on April 29, 2016, while approaching the Aventura Turnberry Jewish Center with what he believed was a bomb. He was furnished with the real looking but fake bomb by an FBI informant.

Medina’s family and attorney have said he is mentally ill and has previously been committed to a psychiatric hospital.

According to prosecutors, Medina initially planned to attack the 800-member Conservative synagogue and its school with assault rifles on Yom Kippur and was hoping to inspire other Muslims to commit terrorist attacks.

He reportedly told an undercover FBI informant he was prepared to kill innocent women and children. He also allegedly made several videos before the planned attack on the synagogue, including one in which he said goodbye to his family, the Sun-Sentinel reported at the time the attack.