Court rejects appeal in wife's attempt to poison mistress

Reuters News
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Posted: May 04, 2012 12:08 AM
Court rejects appeal in wife's attempt to poison mistress

By Terry Baynes

(Reuters) - A microbiologist charged under an anti-terrorism law for attempting to poison her husband's mistress lost a bid to overturn her conviction on Thursday.

Carol Anne Bond had argued that the U.S. federal chemical weapons act, which makes it a crime to acquire or use any chemical weapon, was meant to target terrorist activity, not the crimes of a spurned lover.

A Philadelphia-based federal court rejected Bond's appeal, ruling that the government was justified in applying the law, even if it seemed a questionable move.

Judge Marjorie Rendell called the government decision to prosecute under the law "troubling," but said similar prosecutions often occurred in drug cases.

Bond, who worked at chemical company Rohm and Haas in Pennsylvania, was sentenced to six years in prison in 2008 after pleading guilty to trying to poison her husband's mistress with chemicals stolen from her employer.

She admitted sprinkling lethal arsenic-based compounds on the woman's mailbox, car door handles and the doorknob of her house. The mistress noticed the chemicals and was not harmed, apart from a burn to her thumb.

In 2011, the U.S. Supreme Court reversed an earlier decision by the Philadelphia court rejecting Bond's right to appeal.

Bond's lawyer was not immediately available for comment.

(Editing by Edith Honan and David Brunnstrom)