Conspiracy theories brew online over New Mexico child abuse case

Some conservatives are calling conspiracy after child abuse charges against three individuals suspected of training children for school shootings at a New Mexico compound were dropped over procedural errors.

The decision outraged those on both sides of the political aisle. And it stirred some prominent conservative pundits to question out loud whether there might be more to the situation than just a technicality.

In early August, authorities raided a compound in New Mexico, rescuing 11 children. Five adults were arrested, but this week, charges against three were not filed in the appropriate time frame.

Now, conservatives online think something is up.

https://twitter.com/PeteSantilli_/status/1035100092867534849

On that thread of doubt, whole communities of right-wing conspiracy theorists have been hanging a developing theory of a deep state, false-flag terrorism operation.

The theory, which is still finding itself, is that the FBI was running an operation to train Muslims to commit terrorist attacks in the U.S. To what end is unclear. 

It hinges on the destruction of the compound camp by authorities just three days after the raid and the failure to bring a preliminary hearing in the 10-day window required by state law. Prosecutors said that they had expected the suspects to have been released, which would have given them more time to bring charges. 

https://twitter.com/Cernovich/status/1034881534761754625

One particular thread manages to tie a suspect to CNN, blasting the news network as the “sponsors” of the alleged operation.

Siraj Ibn Wahhaj and four other adults were arrested in early August after a law enforcement raid on their compound premises. Law enforcement rescued 11 malnourished children when raiding the property.

Members of the group were alleged to have conducted weapons training with the children with the aim of carrying out acts of terror and were charged with child abuse.

Wahhaj, 39, was also discovered to be the father of missing three-year-old Georgia boy Abdul-ghani Wahhaj, whose remains were found and identified by investigators at the property.

The charges of felony child abuse were dropped against all five adults on Wednesday over a New Mexico state law that requires a preliminary hearing within 10 days of arrest.

The conspiracy, though, of the government allowing the suspects to get away, may not hold up.

Although free of the initial child abuse charges, both Wahhaj and his partner, Jany Leveille, were arraigned in connection with the death of their son. Each defendant pleaded not guilty and will have a bail hearing on Tuesday.

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David Gilmour

David Gilmour

David Gilmour is a reporter who specializes in national politics, internet culture, and technology.