Man with alleged plan to commit federal crime is arrested

On behalf of The Marks Law Firm, L.L.C. posted in Federal Crimes on Tuesday, January 31, 2012

A man who authorities say had plans to rob and murder a wealthy lawyer has been arrested in nearby Granite City. The suspect is said to have had plans to extort money out of the wealthy man and then kill him by electrocuting him in his hot tub.

The man with alleged plans to commit these federal crimes has been charged with attempted extortion by threatening physical violence. Depending upon the strength of his criminal defense, this charge could be punishable by a fine of up to $250,000 and as many as 20 years in jail.

The man apparently spoke to an acquaintance from work about his plans to commit the crime. He allegedly offered the acquaintance $5,000 to assist in the commission of the acts. The acquaintance was previously convicted of murder and sexual assault. He informed his parole officer of the plan. The acquaintance then worked undercover with the Federal Bureau of Investigation for two weeks, which eventually led to the man’s arrest.

The two weeks of undercover work shed light on the suspect’s alleged plot to obtain money from the wealthy attorney. Some of those ideas included potentially killing a female acquaintance of the intended victim, kidnapping the intended victim and holding him for an extended period of time while forcing him to issue money, electrocuting the intended victim in his hot tub and tricking the intended victim into thinking his body was wired with explosives.

The man said that he needed the money to prevent his home from going into foreclosure. The intended victim appears to have been targeted because he had attempted to solicit sex from the suspect’s wife.

The man was arrested by the FBI shortly before the alleged crime was to be committed.

Although the charges against the man are quite serious, by cooperating with authorities and working on a strong criminal defense against the charges, the man could have the potential punishments reduced or the charges completely dismissed.

Source: STL, “Granite City man had plans to rob, kill man, feds say,” Robert Patrick, Jan. 20, 2012