American Jewish centre bomb-hoaxer pleads guilty

Former journalist Juan Thompson sent threatening emails in an elaborate attempt to bully his ex-girlfriend


A former journalist has pleaded guilty to making fake bomb threats to Jewish Community Centres in an attempt to bully his former girlfriend.

Juan Thompson pleaded guilty on Tuesday to one count of cyber-stalking and one count of making hoax bomb threats, according to a statement released by the United States Attorney's Office Southern District of New York.

The Acting US Attorney, Joon H Kim, said that Thompson had admitted to sending threats in the name of a woman to at least 12 different Jewish community centres across the United States.

Mr Thompson and the woman in question, identified as Victim 1, broke up in July 2016. He subsequently attempted to get her fired from her job by telling her workplace that she had broken the law. In October, he falsely reported that Victim 1 was in possession of child pornography.

In February 2017, Thompson sent at least a dozen threats to Jewish institutions, including the New York offices of the Anti-Defamation League. In a convoluted plan, he sent the emails in his ex-girlfriend’s name, in an attempt to make it appear as if she was trying to frame him.

For example, one email, which Thompson sent in the name of Victim 1, said: “Juan Thompson put two bombs in the office of the Jewish centre today. He wants to create Jewish Newtown tomorrow.”

In December 2012, 26 people were killed in a school shooting in Newtown, Connecticut.

He then tweeted claiming that his former girlfriend “sent a bomb threat in my name to a Jewish centre…now I’m battling the racist FBI and this vile, evil, racist white woman".

“Fuelling fear and distress, Juan Thompson made fake bomb threats to over a dozen Jewish Community Centres and organisations around the country," Mr Kim said.

"As he admitted today in pleading guilty, Thompson made these threats as part of a cruel campaign to cyber-stalk a victim with whom he previously had a relationship.

“Thompson’s threats not only inflicted emotional distress on his victim, but also harmed Jewish communities around the country."

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