Medford man charged with sending threatening letters to Cambridge church, others

| April 16, 2010

Cambridge — A Medford man was arrested Thursday and charged in federal court with mailing threatening letters to churches, including one in Cambridge, and offices of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People.

Jeffrey Smith, 46, of Medford was charged in a criminal complaint with mailing communications containing a threat to injure a person and using the mail to willfully make a threat to damage real property by means of fire.

The complaint affidavit alleges that between September 17-19, 2009, the Saint Paul American Methodist Episcopal Church in Cambridge and the NAACP chapter in Roxbury each received letters stating that the author did “not like African American or minorities in charge as supervisors of my security department at Novartis, nor I like them as president of the United States. For that I am going to burn down your offices just let you know how I feel. What right does some black person has the right to be in charge of me.” The return address was listed as, “Novartis, Massachusetts Avenue, Cambridge, MA 02138, HduBYBM.” According to the Complaint, it was later determined that the Novartis contracts security officers through Securitas Security Services, Inc. (“Securitas”).

It is alleged that between September 22, 2009 and March 16, 2010, the FBI was notified of 29 additional computer generated letters, similarly packaged with a variety of return addresses. Nine of the additional letters were addressed to churches and NAACP chapters in Medford, Mass., Charlotte, NC and Providence, RI. Each of the nine letters articulated a specific threat to burn down the church or NAACP chapter which received the letter. The letters allegedly referenced racial animus towards “Blacks and minorities,” and the election of President Barack Obama as justification for burning down the NAACP office. Two additional letters allegedly threatened to shoot the recipients “on site” should they enter Boston or Providence. According to the complaint, the letters sent to the churches and NAACP all bore the name of a Securitas account or branch manager as the sender. Letters sent to private individuals and residences allegedly bore the pseudonym “Hayward Dubloumi” as the sender.

On September 24, 2009, 13 residences on a street in Somerville, allegedly received computer generated typed letters addressed to “Resident,” stating that a Securitas account manager who lived on a particular street was an “unregistered Level 3 sex offender from Scotland Yard, who should be deported “across the pond” back to his native Great Britain in a pine box.”

According to the complaint affidavit, following interviews with Securitas personnel, agents learned that Smith had recently sent an e-mail to other employees discussing how troubled he was with his current supervisor. Agents executed a search warrant at Smith’s residence in Medford, seizing numerous return address labels bearing the pseudonym “Hayward Yubloumi,” as well as address labels marked “Resident” and bearing two street names in the vicinity of the residence of SMITH’s current supervisor.

According to the affidavit, Smith admitted to agents during an interview that he composed and mailed all the threatening letters to the churches and NAACP using the name of a Securitas supervisor with whom he did not get along, or whom he believed had unfairly taken employment action against a co-worker who is black.

If convicted on these charges, Smith faces up to 20 years imprisonment, to be followed by three years of supervised release, and a $250,000 fine.

The case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation; United States Postal Inspection Service; Cambridge Police Department; Medford Police Department; Providence Police Department; and the Charlotte-Mecklenberg Police Department. It is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney S. Theodore Merritt of Ortiz’s Public Corruption and Special Prosecutions Unit.

The details contained in the criminal complaint are allegations. The defendant is presumed to be innocent unless and until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.

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Category: Church Security

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