Man Sentenced to 20 Years in Prison for Sending Anthrax-Hoax Letters to Three Social Security Offices, White House

Packages to SSA and President Obama contained white powder and threatening messages

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: (410) 965-2671
http://oig.ssa.gov

The California man who sent anthrax-hoax letters to three Social Security Administration (SSA) offices and the White House in February was sentenced to 20 years in federal prison in U.S. District Court in the Eastern District of California on August 23.

Timothy Cloud, 63, a transient from the Sacramento area, pleaded guilty in May to charges of sending the letters to SSA offices in New York, Baltimore, and Kansas City, and to threatening President Obama.

The letters to SSA all contained a white powder and index cards with threatening messages, such as "you stole my money" and "die." All employees at SSA's New York office were evacuated, and four were quarantined. The letter to the President included an index card with the message, "You are just another lying politision," [sic] and a newspaper photo of the President with cross hairs drawn over his face.

SSA's Office of the Inspector General (OIG) worked with the U.S. Marshals Service, the U.S. Secret Service, the Postal Inspection Service, and the FBI in the investigation and search for Cloud. Special Agents from the OIG located and arrested Cloud at a recycling center in California in April.

"Protecting Social Security employees is a top priority for the Office of the Inspector General," said Inspector General Patrick P. O'Carroll, Jr. "The OIG is proud to see this case resolved, and we will continue to do all we can to protect SSA employees and prosecute those who threaten Federal workers and facilities."

Cloud also admitted that, by virtue of a conviction in Texas, he was required to register as a sex offender in California and that he failed to do so.

In addition to the 20-year prison sentence, U.S. District Judge William B. Shubb ordered Cloud to serve a 10-year period of supervised release upon his release from prison.

For more information, please contact the OIG's Office of External Relations at (410) 965-2671