Windang man Simon Fleming, a keen shooter fuelled by a grab-bag of far-right extremist ideology, intended to terrorise the public when he shot at passing cars and barricaded himself in a dive shop, a court has been told.
In the years before the Windang Road incident, the 41-year-old was overtaken by the belief that political correctness, western feminism and cultural Marxism would lead to a "white genocide" that threatened the culture and existence of Anglo-Saxon men, prosecutor James Renwick told a NSW Supreme Court jury on Wednesday.
Fleming laid out his beliefs in a manifesto found on a USB he was carrying on the day of his arrest.
In it he proclaimed the "white race will become a minority" and "diversity means no white culture, no white schools, no white people".
"When it comes out in the media that Muslims are grooming our children, the streets will run red," he wrote.
He also espoused his hatred towards transgender people, writing he would love to mow them down with an AK-47 "as I don't see them as human beings".
On the morning of Sunday November 28, 2021, Fleming dressed himself in black combat fatigues, grabbed two firearms and a silver briefcase pretending to be a bomb and set off towards a main street on the outskirts of Wollongong.
There, he shot his bolt-action rifle into the air and at passing cars before entering the dive shop and taking two employees hostage.
The Crown alleges Fleming's actions were a case of terrorism, motivated by a desire to intimidate the Australian public and the government.
Fleming, who owned Nazi memorabilia and exhibited a fixation with the military, descended further into extremism during COVID-19 restrictions imposed in NSW, unable to go to church or the rifle range, or say a proper goodbye to his grandmother when she died.
He became concerned the country was heading in the wrong direction and its freedoms eroded, the jury heard.
While COVID restrictions intensified his beliefs, Fleming had been planning some form of the event as far back as 2019, Dr Renwick said.
In a video of Fleming's arrest played before the court, he tells police he had originally intended to carry out the event in central Wollongong, rather than the quiet suburb of Windang.
Asked by a police officer why he wanted his actions to generate more attention, he replied: "I wanted the government of this country to stop f***ing with our people. We're under attack."
The hostages told police that they overheard Fleming saying "this is communism" and "I am a terrorist", during the siege.
Fleming is contesting the charge that his actions were motivated by terrorism, as well as charges for using a firearm in a manner likely to endanger members of the public, detaining the hostages, using a fake bomb to create a false sense of danger and unlawfully possessing gel blasters found at his home.
Fleming is the first person in Australia to be charged with terrorism offences not motivated by religious ideology.
The trial continues on Thursday.
Read more Illawarra court and crime stories here.
Australian Associated Press