Man sentenced to prison for trying to blow up pipeline in Central Texas

He planned the attack in an attempt to fight capitalism and climate change, feds say

FILE IMAGE - Construction on the Permian Highway Pipeline Through Central Texas in Hays County on June 29, 2020.

SAN ANTONIO – A Fort Worth man was sentenced to prison for trying to blow up a natural gas pipeline in Hays County, authorities say.

Ryan Blake McKinney, 22, was sentenced in a federal court in Austin on Thursday to five years in prison, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office.

Authorities said McKinney attempted to detonate a device near a section of the Permian Highway Pipeline on Jan. 26, 2022. He “conducted extensive planning for the attack” in an attempt to fight capitalism and climate change, a news release states.

He turned himself in after his device failed due to a design flaw.

“Despite this defendant’s failed attempt to cause destruction, his intent, as shown in his thorough planning, posed an irresponsible and very dangerous risk,” Jaime Esparza, U.S. Attorney of the Western District of Texas, said in the release. “Our prosecution and the sentencing in this case make it clear that attacks on our nation’s critical infrastructure are unacceptable and will be met with the full force of the law.”

The FBI investigated the case.

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Rebecca Salinas joined KSAT in the fall of 2019. Her skills include content management, engagement and reporting.