Editor's Note: This article originally appeared on Business Insider.
Former Canadian Army Reserve Master Cpl. Patrik Mathews, 26, was first identified as a member of The Base by Winnipeg Free Press reporter Ryan Thorpe.
Days after Thorpe's report was published, Mathews went missing and was discharged from the military for his alleged ties to the group. His car was found about 10 miles from the U.S. border soon thereafter, and police found a cache of weapons when they raided his home.
Vice reporters Ben Makuch, Mack Lamoureux, and Zachary Kamel, citing confidential sources, reported on Thursday that Mathews had been illegally smuggled across the border and is being hidden by members of The Base, which has operated in encrypted chatrooms as a largely online organization.
This undated photo provided by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police shows Patrik Mathews. Authorities in northern Minnesota and Canada are warning the public to avoid making contact with Patrik Mathews, a former Canadian army reservist who has been missing for two weeks(Royal Canadian Mounted Police via Associated Press)
Mathews is trained in the use of explosives, according to the Winnipeg Free Press, indicating that The Base is making an attempt to recruit members who can be useful in combat or terror attacks. Vice also reports that Mathews allegedly helped train about 12 other Base members at a camp in Georgia this fall.
The Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) in Canada has an open missing persons investigation into Mathews, and Vice reports that the Canadian Ministry of Defence has an open investigation into Mathews. The Federal Bureau of Investigations declined to comment on whether it was investigating Mathews.
The Base has groups in the US and Canada, according to The Daily Beast, and is reportedly led by a man claiming to be an Iraq and Afghanistan veteran, according to an earlier Vice report. It's a neo-Nazi organization that aims to bring about a “race war” and establish a caucasian ethno-state after the collapse of society and unite members from disparate white nationalist groups.
While global terror overall was down in 2018, the one area of growth was in white nationalist and far-right terror, according to Stephen Killelea, the founder of the Institute for Economics and Peace, previously told Insider.
“We know it's going to increase this year,” Killelea said.
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