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Richlands man sentenced to prison time for possessing and manufacturing an unregistered explosives device

ABINGDON, Va.-  Cole Carini, a Richlands, Virginia man who appeared at a hospital in June 2020 with severe injuries to his hands and fingers, was sentenced today in U.S. District Court in Abingdon to 84 months in federal prison.

Carini, 24, pleaded guilty in January to one count of possessing and manufacturing an unregistered explosive device.

“When he stockpiled bomb-making materials and actually designed and manufactured an improvised explosive device designed to cause significant harm, the defendant put the safety of the community at risk and committed a serious federal crime,” Acting United States Attorney Daniel P. Bubar said today. “Today’s sentence ought to send a clear message that such behavior will not be tolerated.  We appreciate the great work of our federal and state partners that brought Carini to justice.”

“Mr. Carini suffered serious injuries when explosive devices he possessed detonated in a residential area. The danger of such devices and potential for additional explosions and casualties could have been more devasting if responding law enforcement personnel were not able to properly dispose of the devices and chemicals,” Special Agent in Charge Stanley M. Meador said today. “Through our partnership, the residential area was made safe again; and Mr. Carini was held accountable for his illegal activity.”

According to court documents, on June 3, 2020, Carini went to a hospital in Richlands suffering from extensive injuries to his hands, and shrapnel wounds to his neck and throat. After being interviewed at the hospital by authorities, Carini reported that his injuries were caused by a lawn mower accident at his home.

During a search of Carini’s home, agents found the lawn was overgrown and found no other evidence indicating a lawn mower had recently been used. They did, however, find evidence of an explosion in Carini’s bedroom that was more consistent with the types of injuries Carini had suffered.  Agents also discovered drawings of improvised explosive devices, significant quantities of Triacetone Triperoxide, which is an explosive substance used in the creation of improvised explosive devices, exploded and unexploded components of pipe-bomb devices, fusing, and a partially constructed pressure-cooker explosive device similar to that used in the Boston Marathon bombing.

The investigation of the case was conducted by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives, the Virginia State Police, the Richlands Police Department and the Tazewell County Sheriff’s Office.

Assistant United States Attorneys Zachary T. Lee and Whit D. Pierce are prosecuting the case for the United States.

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