Prosecutors: They also planned to hit Rahm Emanuel's house.
CHICAGO - Three men accused of making Molotov cocktails had been planning to attack President Obama's campaign headquarters, Mayor Rahm Emanuel's home and other targets during the NATO summit, prosecutors said Saturday.
Defense attorneys alleged that the arrests Wednesday during a raid at a house were an effort to scare the thousands of people expected to protest at the two-day gathering of world leaders. They told a judge that undercover police were the ones who brought the Molotov cocktails.
"This is just propaganda to create a climate of fear," attorney Michael Duetsch said. Later, he said: "We believe this is all a setup and entrapment."
But prosecutors said the men were self-described anarchists and told a crowded courtroom that they intended to create mayhem in Chicago. A state's attorney cited one of three men boasting weeks earlier about the damage they would do in Chicago. "After NATO, the city will never be the same," he quoted the man as saying.
At one point, one of the men asked the others if they had ever seen a "cop on fire."
Police Superintendent Garry McCarthy dismissed the idea there was anything more to the arrests than police responding to "an imminent threat." "When someone was in the position [of having] Molotov cocktails -- that's pretty imminent," he said. "It was not a completed investigation."
Police identified the suspects as Brian Church, 20, of Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.; Jared Chase, 24, of Keene, N.H.; and Brent Vincent Betterly, 24. A police spokesman gave Betterly's hometown as Oakland Park, Mass., but no such town exists. They were charged with providing material support for terrorism, conspiracy to commit terrorism and possession of explosives. They were each being held on $1.5 million bond.