In a bizarre turn of events, the white supremacist shock blogger Hal Turner claimed in court Tuesday that he helped thwart an assassination attempt on President Barack Obama.
The Internet radio host has been accused of using his Web site to threaten three judges in Chicago, and of urging violence against to two Connecticut lawmakers, telling his readers and listeners to "take up arms."
In court Tuesday, Turner's attorney said his client was working as an FBI informant, and that he provided them with information that prevented the assassination of Obama. Turner claims the FBI told him what he could and couldn't say about the incident to avoid prosecution.
But federal prosecutor William Hogan told the judge that he'd "never heard anything about that" and that Turner's contacts with the FBI ended "some time ago."
Turner was arrested on a complaint filed in federal court in Chicago after he allegedly made threats against three Chicago-based appeals judges who refused to overturn local handgun bans.
"Let me be the first to say this plainly: These judges deserve to be killed," Turner wrote in an Internet posting.
The post also included a map of the federal courthouse where the judges are based. The posting stated a map showing the judges' homes would later be added.
"We take threats to federal judges very seriously," said U.S. Attorney Patrick J. Fitzgerald.
Turner has pleaded not guilty.