Undercover operations take time, pose danger - FOX5 Vegas - KVVU

Undercover operations take time, pose danger

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LAS VEGAS (FOX5) -

The alleged plot by two sovereign citizens to kidnap and potentially kill Metro officers was stopped by undercover officers in a months-long operation.

Retired Metro Lt. Randy Sutton called the case disturbing and said most law enforcement personnel are familiar with the sovereign citizens and the danger they pose.

"They have a long, long history of targeting or being involved with criminal activities that are extremely violent," Sutton said. "Law enforcement is one of their favorite targets. They don't feel the law applies to them."

Sutton has done undercover work and says the Metro operation achieved its goal in stopping the potential brutality before it happened.

He credits the undercover officers who essentially put their lives on hold, taking that initial tip, researching the situation and then walking into the fire where the outcome is unknown.

"When you're involved in a long-term investigation, it's more dangerous," Sutton said. "It's very difficult. There's a huge amount of stress on the undercovers. It's a very fluid situation that can develop rapidly because the control of the criminal activity is in the hands of the bad guy."

While this plot was stopped, Sutton says it's likely there are others across the country to do harm by the sovereign citizens.

"They're terrorists," Sutton said. "They're just home-grown terrorists."

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