Plea deal for 7-year sentence for UW arson
Friday, March 16, 2012
TACOMA, Wash. (AP) -- Prosecutors are recommending seven years in prison for 32-year-old Justin Solondz when he is sentenced Friday in federal court in Tacoma for his role in an ecoterror arson at the University of Washington.
Solondz pleaded guilty in December to arson and conspiracy. Prosecutors say he built firebombs that started the 2001 fire at the university's Center for Urban Horticulture in Seattle. Members of the Earth Liberation Front mistakenly thought a researcher was genetically altering poplar trees. The fire caused $6 million damaged and destroyed the work of several UW researchers.
Solondz was arrested last year following his expulsion from China where he spent three years in prison after he was caught with marijuana.
Three other people accused of the arson have been convicted, and a fourth killed himself in jail.