WASHINGTON, Aug. 5 (UPI) -- Access to a dryer used to produce usable anthrax spores was part of a package of evidence the FBI had built against scientist Bruce Ivins, sources said.
Ivins, a scientist at the U.S. Army's Fort Detrick, Md., biodefense labs, apparently committed suicide July 29 after he had emerged as the chief suspect in the 2001 anthrax letter attacks that killed five people and sickened 17. Ivins had allegedly borrowed a drying machine called a lyopholizer needed to make dry, mailable spores from the anthrax liquids usually handled by his unit, The Washington Post reported Tuesday.
Sources told the newspaper that Ivins went through a formal process to check out the lyopholizer and, in doing so, created a record that authorities had obtained and were building their case on. They also say Ivins performed at least one project for the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency that would have allowed him to use the machine.
Ivins was never charged and his attorney said the FBI had the wrong man in their race to close the 7-year-old case.