April 23, 1997 Tampa, FL
Florida police arrest Todd Vanbiber, a member of the neo-Nazi National Alliance’s Tampa unit and the shadowy League of the Silent Soldier, after he accidentally sets off pipe bombs he was building, blasting shrapnel into his own face. He is accused of plotting to use the bombs on the approach to Disney World to divert attention from a planned string of bank robberies. Vanbiber pleads guilty to weapons and explosives charges and is sentenced to more than six years in federal prison. He is released in 2002. Within two years, Vanbiber is posting messages on neo- Nazi Internet sites boasting that he has built over 300 bombs successfully and only made one error, and describing mass murderer Timothy McVeigh as a hero.
The Second Wave: Return of the Militias
Southern Poverty Law Center Special Report