In an attempt to "secretly sicken opponents of Israel" and presumably star as the bad guys in a barely believable action movie, two guys from New York have been accused by the FBI of assembling a portable X-Ray weapon that would shoot lethal doses of radiation. Seriously. They were going to sell it to Jewish organisations or the KKK.
The two guys -- 49-year-old Glendon Scott Crawford, a GE industrial mechanic, and 54-year-old Eric J. Feight, a GE contractor -- had actually managed to assemble the damn thing. Crawford's goal was to build "a truck-borne, industrial-grade x-ray system, thus weaponising that system and allowing it to be turned on and off from a distance and without detection." Basically, beam radiation at people who wouldn't realise it actually hit until days later. Crawford called the weapon, "Hiroshima on a light switch".
The AP reports how the two bozos with big bad dreams got caught:
Last June, the undercover investigator brought Crawford X-ray tubes to examine for possible use in the weapon, followed by their technical specifications a month later. At a November meeting in an Albany coffee shop with undercover investigators, Crawford brought Feight, both said they were committed to building the device and named the group "the guild," the indictment said.
Undercover informants who pretended to be the KKK met with Crawford and Feight (who used codenames Dimitri and Yoda, respectively) to learn about the weapon system and act as potential buyers of the X-Ray gun. Luckily, the FBI was able to break up any real transaction of the weapon.
But the most ridiculous thing is -- especially for those fearing X-Ray wielding terrorists in the future -- that though the weapon was assembled, the feds found it inoperable. In fact, doctors aren't even sure if such a radiation gun would actually work as detailed even if the weapon itself worked. The two dimwits probably thought they were going to be fleecing the KKK with complicated words and industrial design. [Times Union via NPR, AP]