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Terror suspect arrested near Capitol in FBI sting

February 17th, 2012 1:44 pm by NEDRA PICKLER Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) -- Police say a terrorism suspect has been arrested in an FBI sting operation near the U.S. Capitol while planning to detonate what he thought were explosives.

U.S. Capitol Police say their officers and FBI officials arrested the man Friday in a sting operation.

Justice Department spokesman Dean Boyd said the suspect was closely monitored by law enforcement, and the purported explosives were deactivated, so the public was not in danger.

Two people briefed on the matter told The Associated Press he was not arrested on the Capitol grounds, and the FBI has had him under surveillance around the clock for several weeks. They spoke on a condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak on the record.

A U.S. law enforcement official said the person arrested was canvassing the U.S. Capitol with violent intentions. He was not believed to have any known connections to al Qaida. It was not immediately clear whether he was a U.S. citizen.

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Associated Press writers Laurie Kellman and Matt Apuzzo contributed to this report.

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