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Appleton inmate pleads to anthrax hoax

KANSAS CITY, MO. - A man charged with sending a white powder purporting to be anthrax from his cell at the Prairie Correctional Facility in Appleton to the Internal Revenue Service in Kansas City, Mo., has pleaded guilty in federal court.

Jonathon Kenneth Joyner, 21, of Appleton, pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge Howard F. Sachs on Wednesday to the charge contained in a Feb. 7, 2008, federal indictment, according to a news release from John F. Wood, United States Attorney for the Western District of Missouri.

By pleading guilty, Joyner admitted that he intended to convey false or misleading information regarding a biological weapon.

Joyner had mailed what later turned out to be baby talcum powder to the IRS Fraud Detection Center in Kansas City, Mo., on June 22 with a letter stating: "Anthrax Breath Deep Pig Ha Ha Ha Ha."

Joyner sent the letter less than five days after he received a letter informing him that his federal tax refund check was being returned to the U.S. Treasury at the request of the IRS.

He could be subject to a sentence of five years in federal prison without parole, plus a fine up to $250,000.