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Man pleads guilty to causing anthrax scare in KC

Friday, June 6, 2008 | 1:37 a.m. CDT; updated 3:04 a.m. CDT, Tuesday, July 22, 2008

KANSAS CITY — A 21-year-old man pleaded guilty to sending a letter containing a white powder and a note mentioning anthrax to the IRS headquarters in Kansas City.

The U.S. attorney’s office said Thursday that Jonathan Joyner of Appleton, Minn., admitted to conveying false or misleading information regarding a biological weapon. An IRS worker opened the letter on June 27, 2007.

An envelope was sent to the IRS Fraud Detection Center containing the powder and a letter that said, “Anthrax Breath Deep Pig Ha Ha Ha Ha.” The substance was later found to be baby powder.

Prosecutors say the letter came from a Minnesota prison where Joyner was housed, after he learned that the IRS was returning his federal tax refund to the U.S. Treasury.

Joyner could get five years in prison and be fined $250,000. A sentencing date has not been set.


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