Sheriff’s deputies in Polk County, Florida arrested Pastor Terry Jones and his associate, Associate Pastor Marvin Sapp, Jr., on felony charges of unlawful conveyance of fuel, according to Yahoo! News on Wednesday night. Jones, 61, and Sapp, 44, were driving a pickup truck which towed a huge barbecue-style grill which was filled with 2,998 Qurans – Muslim holy books – which were soaked in kerosene and ready to be burned at a park in Mulberry – a town of about 3,000 persons located between Tampa and Orlando.
The two chose Wednesday because it was the 12th anniversary of 9-11 when Americans were killed in New York City by two al-Qaeda attacks via airplanes, and the number 2,998 was selected because that is the number of people who died during the terrorist attack a dozen years ago Wednesday.
Besides being charged with the felonious charge of unlawful conveyance of fuel, Jones was also charged with a misdemeanor of unlawful open-carry of a firearm. Additionally, Sapp was charged for not having a valid registration for the trailer being towed by the pickup truck.
Jones, the pastor of a small evangelical Christian church, gained attention for the first time in 2010 when he planned to burn a Quran on the 9th anniversary of 9-11. He eventually did burn a Quran in March of 2011.
Though the United States military has often asked Jones not to protest as he has due to the danger his protests bring Americans and Western troops in Afghanistan and elsewhere, he refuses to do stop planning protests.