11 Feb 2004

Fiji man pleads guilty to mailing anthrax threat

3:33 pm on 11 February 2004

A former Fijian man who is now a naturalised United States citizen has pleaded guilty to mailing an anthrax threat to the Federal Immigration Service in San Fransisco in April, 2002.

Radio Fiji reports that Mohammed Lateef was indicted last August and entered a guilty plea in court this week to one count of threatening to use a biological agent as a weapon.

The maximum penalty for this offence is life in a Federal prison and a fine of up to 500-thousand US dollars.

Lateef's letter contained a white powder and a message containing the words ANTHRAX, HATE ISRAEL, DESTROY AMERICA and EL QAEDA.

The Immigration Service evacuated its mailroom and isolated its employees who had been exposed after receiving the letter.

Lateef will be sentenced on the 17th of May.