Mariposa & Yosemite

Sentencing scheduled for anthrax hoaxer who targeted Radanovich's office

Marc Keyser said his goal was to alert people to a weak official response to the anthrax menace.
Marc Keyser said his goal was to alert people to a weak official response to the anthrax menace.

Marc McMain Keyser, the Sacramento man who perpetrated a nationwide anthrax hoax two years ago, is scheduled to be sentenced today in federal court.

Keyser was found guilty in September by a jury on five counts involving packages with ominous messages he mailed to the Modesto office of Congressman George Radanovich, R-Mariposa, and a Starbucks coffee house and McDonald's fast food restaurant, both in Sacramento.

Keyser admitted at his trial that he mailed more than 100 packages containing fake anthrax packets to media organizations, politicians and retail businesses across the country.

He insisted, however, that he acted only to demonstrate how vulnerable and ill prepared the United States is to such an attack, and that his intent was not to terrorize.

The government seeks five years in prison for Keyser, a 67-year-old retired elementary school teacher and Army veteran with no prior criminal record.

His defense attorneys are asking for five years on probation and 2,000 hours of community service.

In one of the incidents, the jury found Keyser guilty of sending a hoax to the Modesto office of Rep. George Radanovich, R-Mariposa, but acquitted him of mailing a threat to that office.

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