BAY CITY, Mich. (WLNS)- A Whittemore, Mich. man pleaded guilty in two separate cases on Monday that relate back to packages with pipe bombs being placed near cellphone stores.
The defendant, 76-year-old John Douglas Allen, faces up to 20 years in prison.
Allen pleaded guilty to placing a pipe bomb concealed in a USPS package on the doorstep of an AT&T store in Sault Ste. Marie. That same day, Allen also placed another USPS package containing a pipe bomb outside a Verizon store in Cheboygan.
According to the FBI, Allen was part of a group called “Coalition for Moral Telecommunication” (CMT,) a group Allen claims is almost “30 strong.” It aims to cease the transmission of “cursing, pornography, and all manner of indecent communication.” The note gave cell companies six months to comply as “software must me [sic] developed.”
The two packages were examined by the FBI laboratory Explosive Unit and they were determined to be pipe bombs. Both bombs contained shrapnel and a note.
The note demanded $5 million and further threatened cell companies, saying: “You may, if you like, fight this, go to the Police, FBI or any Government Agency. Understand this: if ONE of our people is arrested, now or in the future, your problems will begin. Our reach is in 27 states thus far. After any arrest [sic] the price will go up one hundred times. Any doubts? Test us!”
Allen also pleaded guilty to placing threatening letters at cell towers in the Upper Penninsula.
“The actions of this defendant could have resulted in significant bodily harm or death to citizens in the area,” stated U.S. Attorney Dawn N. Ison. “Thanks to the hard work of our law enforcement partners and prosecutors, we were able to find and remove these dangerous devices before the defendant could cause serious harm.”