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Maine man to serve 27 months for selling homemade bomb to ATF agent

ATF Agent (ATF/Released)

A Saco man was sentenced Tuesday in U.S. District Court in Portland to 27 months in prison for selling a homemade bomb to an undercover ATF agent nearly two years ago.

Michael Rickett, 23, pleaded guilty in February to one count of transferring an unregistered destructive device. He was arrested Dec. 11 and had been held without bail since then.

Rickett came to the attention of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives in July 2017 after a concerned citizen reported to Saco police that Rickett had tried to sell him the device, according to court documents. Saco police informed the ATF of the complaint.

An ATF agent called Rickett, who offered to sell the agent a “military grade IED” for $350. The agent met with Rickett, negotiated a lower price and the agent bought the device for $200 on July 13.

An analyst for the bureau determined the device contained, among other things, 26 pennies, a gold-colored pendant or charm and pull tabs from beverage cans, court documents said. A smokeless powder containing nitrocellulose and nitroglycerin that is highly flammable and is used as a propellent in some kinds of ammunition also was found in the device.

Court documents did not say why Rickett built the bomb.

In addition to prison time, U.S. District Judge D. Brock Hornby sentenced Rickett to three years of supervised release.

Under the federal sentencing guidelines, the recommended sentence was between 27 and 33 months in prison.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Michael Conley recommended a sentence within the guideline range. Rickett’s attorney, Federal Defender David Beneman, recommended an 8-month sentence.


© 2019 the Bangor Daily News (Bangor, Maine)

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