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FBI search in North End tied to man with troubling past

Officials sought to revoke the release of Trevor Lucas, 31, whose criminal history includes weapons and attempted kidnapping charges.

The FBI's Violent Crimes Task Force and Evidence Response Team, along with Boston Police, searched a Fulton Street apartment in the North End on Wednesday.
The FBI's Violent Crimes Task Force and Evidence Response Team, along with Boston Police, searched a Fulton Street apartment in the North End on Wednesday.Pat Greenhouse/Globe Staff

A Boston man who spent years in prison for seeking revenge on a Wisconsin teenager he met through the online video game “World of Warcraft” was arrested Wednesday for violating the terms of his release, federal authorities said.

As the FBI searched his North End apartment for hours, Trevor Lucas, 31, was brought to a bail hearing, according to his lawyer, James Sultan. Sultan and federal authorities declined to say what prompted the arrest.

The US Attorney’s office said Lucas “was detained pending a detention and preliminary revocation hearing.” Kristen Setera, an FBI spokeswoman, said agents arrived at the Fulton Street apartment Wednesday morning.

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“The FBI’s Violent Crimes Task Force and our Evidence Response Team, along with the Boston Police Department are conducting court-authorized activity in connection with an ongoing federal investigation,” Setera said in a statement. “There is no threat to public safety. Due to the ongoing investigation, we’re going to decline further comment.”

Lucas’s father, Louis Lucas, said he had “no idea” what triggered his son’s arrest and did not know what investigators were searching for.

“I wish I knew,” he said outside the apartment building, which he owns. “They’re going to give me a list of all the things they take.”

The building's owner, Louis Lucas , left, stands with agents outside. He said he did not know why his son had been arrested.
The building's owner, Louis Lucas , left, stands with agents outside. He said he did not know why his son had been arrested. Pat Greenhouse/Globe Staff

Court records show Trevor Lucas pleaded guilty in 2010 to brandishing a firearm during a crime of violence after a wild incident in which he sought revenge on a boy he claimed stole $5,000 in virtual gold in “World of Warcraft.” He was arrested after driving from Massachusetts to Wisconsin in a car he had outfitted to resemble a police car, its trunk lined with plastic — a plan an appeals court later called “incredibly detailed and disturbing.”

After Lucas’s arrest, police found guns, ammunition, pepper spray, handcuffs, and other weapons in his home, according to court records. He was already on conditional release at that time from a previous arrest for illegal possession of large-capacity firearms earlier that year, court records show.

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Lucas was sentenced to 17 1/2 years behind bars, but that sentence was reduced by six years in 2017, and Lucas was released in July 2019.

At the apartment building Wednesday afternoon, a member of the Evidence Response Team wore a large pink respirator strapped over his face. He grabbed tools from a supply truck and took a hammer and a power drill upstairs. The search continued into the evening.

A downstairs neighbor, Johnny Friedman, said FBI agents asked him if he could leave the building for about 30 minutes while they brought something up from the basement.

The agents also asked Friedman if Lucas, who lived on the third floor, ever spoke about weapons. Friedman said he had not.

Lucas moved in nearly a year ago, Friedman said, and had told him it was a struggle to find a job as a felon.

Alex Burbine, a neighbor who lives across the street, said he was stunned to see federal agents and their unmarked vehicles on his normally quiet street when he returned from playing tennis around 12:30 p.m. There were at least half a dozen sleek, black unmarked cars and SUVs, he said.

“All I’ve seen is a lot of police presence and FBI violent crime guys coming and going,” he said. “It’s a very family-oriented neighborhood.”

A neighbor who declined to be named said he could hear investigators dismantling something inside the home.

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“They’re definitely going into the drywall,” the man said.

Boston police declined to comment.

Mike Bello of the Globe staff contributed to this report.


Tonya Alanez can be reached at tonya.alanez@globe.com or 617-929-1579. Follow her on Twitter @talanez. Travis Andersen can be reached at travis.andersen@globe.com. Follow him on Twitter @TAGlobe. Shelley Murphy can be reached at shelley.murphy@globe.com. Follow her on Twitter @shelleymurph.