PITTSBURGH, Pennsylvania (Reuters) - A man residing in Dublin, Ireland, was indicted on Wednesday for sending more than 40 emailed bomb threats to the University of Pittsburgh, which prompted the school to evacuate parts of its campus more than 100 times, federal prosecutors said.
Adam Stuart Busby, 64, was charged with 17 counts of wire fraud, 16 counts of maliciously conveying false information and two counts of international extortion.
Busby is currently in custody in Ireland.
“I am very relieved,” University of Pittsburgh chancellor Mark Nordenberg said.
But Nordenberg said the threats might have scared off prospective students since they occurred during a peak application period.
In April, after receiving 10 bomb threats in three weeks, the school offered a $50,000 reward for information leading to the capture of whoever was responsible.
A week later, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette received an email, allegedly sent by Busby, saying: “Tell police - a bomb is at Pitt chancellor Nordenberg’s house on Devonshire Street, Pittsburgh. Nordenberg only has to withdraw the $50,000 bounty, to end the threats against Pitt. He has refused. The offer still stands.”
In a related indictment, two Ohio men were charged with making additional threats against the university.
The university has received 143 threats this year. The first was made on February 13 against the University of Pittsburgh’s Chevron Science Center, where the chemistry department is located.
There was no indication the bomb threats had any connection to the shooting at the university’s psychiatric institute in April. Two people were killed and seven people were wounded when a gunman opened fire in the clinic’s lobby.
Reporting by Matt Stroud and Ellen Wulfhorst; Writing by Edith Honan; Editing by Greg McCune and Stacey Joyce