Man to be sentenced for knowing of cousin's ricin

By: AP
By: AP

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) -- A Utah man who says he knew his cousin produced and possessed the deadly poison ricin is scheduled to be sentenced Wednesday.

Fifty-four-year-old Thomas Tholen pleaded guilty in August to failing to report a crime.

The charge carries a possible three-year prison term, but prosecutors have recommended three years of probation in exchange for Tholen's cooperation.

Tholen's cousin, Roger Bergendorff, pleaded guilty to possessing a biological toxin and faces three years in prison. He said he never intentionally or accidentally released any of the lethal powder.

Police and prosecutors have cast Bergendorff as a troubled man who made the ricin on his own years ago. They say the case was not linked to terrorism.


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