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Bail set at $1.5 million bail each for 3 accused of planning terror at NATO summit

Posted at 2:54 PM, May 19, 2012
and last updated 2012-05-19 14:54:16-04

By the CNN Wire Staff

CHICAGO (CNN) – An Illinois judge set bail at $1.5 million for each of the three suspects accused of traveling to Chicago “to commit acts of domestic terrorism” during the NATO summit.

In court, prosecutors accused the three men of “preparing for violence and destruction” such as stockpiling Molotov cocktails and other weapons and planning attacks on police.

But the defense called those accusations “propaganda” and contended authorities “infiltrated” a peaceful group and set up the three men.

Brian Church, Jared Chase and Brent Betterly — all described as “out-of-state men” — were charged with criminal acts relating to terrorism, conspiracy to commit terrorism and possession of explosives, the Cook County State’s Attorney office said in a statement Saturday.

The judge set the three defendants’ next court date for Tuesday.

On Sunday, NATO kicks off its two-day summit in Chicago, and the war in Afghanistan is expected to dominate discussions. Afghan President Hamid Karzai and Pakistani President Asif Zardari are both expected to attend the meeting.

NATO leaders are currently on a timetable to withdraw all of the alliance’s combat troops from Afghanistan in 2014.

CNN’s Paul Vercammen and Michael Martinez contributed to this report.