Jesse William Korff, 19, was arrested Saturday and will face federal charges in New Jersey of possession and transfer of a toxin for use as a weapon and smuggling goods. New Jersey U.S. Attorney Paul J. Fishman said the teen tried to sell two doses of the ricin-like poison on a black market website for $2,500 to an undercover Homeland Security agent.
He also offered advice on how much of the plant-based toxin was needed to kill a person of a specific weight and the best delivery methods, officials allege. He allegedly told the agent the victim's death would appear to be a particularly bad case of the flu.
"The criminal complaint alleges Jesse Korff was willing to sell a potentially deadly toxin to a stranger over the Internet," Fishman said. "He allegedly peddled the poison on a virtual black market of illegal and dangerous goods, hidden in the shadow of a secretive computer network favored by cybercriminals. Had this been an actual sale to a real customer, the consequences could have been tragic. Fortunately, an undercover law enforcement officer posing as a buyer was able to get a dangerous chemical weapon and its alleged seller off our streets."
Fishman's office didn't say how the suspect came upon the toxin.