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A teenager, aged 17, accused of repeatedly making hoax emergency calls to different places across the country, has been charged by the police

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A teenager from California, aged 17, is suspected of causing numerous incidents of swatting and bomb threats across the United States. He is now facing legal charges in Florida, as per a motion for pretrial detention.

Alan Filion was brought to Florida on January 30 to face charges related to a swatting incident at a mosque, according to the Seminole County State Attorney’s Office.

Swatting involves falsely reporting to the police about a violent crime, aiming to bring them to a specific location.

This dangerous prank has been a concern for the FBI for about twenty years. It gained more attention when celebrities became victims. Recently, it’s taken a political turn, targeting federal judges, lawmakers, state capitol buildings, and even the White House.

Filion threatened a mass shooting at the Masjid Al Hayy Mosque in Sanford, Florida, during a phone call to law enforcement in May 2023, as per a news release from the Seminole County Sheriff’s Office.

In the call, Filion claimed to have a gun and explosives. He also mentioned committing a mass shooting in the name of Satan. The call even had sounds of gunfire.

Around 30 law enforcement officers responded to the mosque, according to the sheriff’s office.

Authorities, including the FBI and the Department of Justice, collaborated to trace the mosque 911 call to Filion’s home in Lancaster, California.

The sheriff’s office found that the teen had made several accounts on websites offering swatting services, and their investigation led them to his home address through various IP addresses.

In July 2023, a search warrant was executed at Filion’s home, leading to his arrest on January 18.

Filion faces three felony charges of false reporting and a felony charge of unlawful use of a two-way communication device. Each charge accuses him of committing the acts while facilitating or furthering an act of terrorism and while showing prejudice.

Court records indicate that Filion has pleaded not guilty and is currently in custody. His attorney declined to comment to CNN.

Sheriff Dennis Lemma emphasized the seriousness of swatting, mentioning its risks to innocent lives and the waste of resources. He pledged continued efforts with law enforcement and the judiciary to catch swatting perpetrators.

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