- Associated Press - Monday, February 29, 2016

TACOMA, Wash. (AP) - An Army deserter who prosecutors say made statements supporting the Islamic State group has pleaded not guilty to weapons charges.

Daniel Seth Franey, of Montesano, appeared in U.S. District Court in Tacoma on Monday. He was charged earlier this month with illegally possessing firearms, including machine guns, and court documents said he described Osama bin Laden as “a beautiful man” and called for the death of American troops.

Investigators said the 33-year-old was banned from having guns because he was subject to a protection order taken out by his former partner in 2014, but he nevertheless joined an undercover agent in making what he believed were black-market gun deliveries.

According to charging papers, Franey served in the Army from 2002 to 2008 and was stationed in Texas and South Korea before deserting.

His trial was set for April 18.

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