A Los Angeles man on Wednesday pleaded guilty to lying to federal agents and two counts of making bomb threats from two Northern San Joaquin Valley locations, according to the U.S. attorney's office.
Stephen J. Isoczky Jr., 60, contacted the national telephone network of the U.S. Postal Inspection Service from a pay phone at the Modesto Transit Center on I Street, claiming to be a concerned resident alerting authorities of impending letter bombs Sept. 2.
Isoczky said the bombs were going to be delivered shortly to a residence in Rocklin, northeast of Sacramento.
He admitted that on Nov. 1, he again contacted the USPIS national phone network claiming to be a concerned person alerting authorities of a pending letter bomb from a pay phone in Tracy. Isoczky claimed this bomb was sent to a residence in Auburn.
The Postal Inspection Service and other law enforcement personnel spent more than 200 extra hours X-raying and manually screening all mail going to the target ZIP codes and the specific addresses.
According to court records, after Isoczky's second bomb threat, law enforcement traced his call to the telephone in Tracy. Law enforcement later located a nearby motel in which Isoczky was staying.
When law enforcement talked to Isoczky on Nov. 1, he repeatedly lied about his involvement and he said he didn't know the intended targets when it was later learned he did.
The case is the product of an investigation by the U.S. Postal Inspection Service, with the cooperation of the Modesto Police Department and the Tracy Police Department.
At the time Isoczky made the false letter bomb threats, he was a federal fugitive. In 2005, Isoczky was convicted of federal counterfeiting offenses. After serving his sentence, he was released in June 2008, but failed to contact his assigned probation officer.
Isoczky is scheduled to be sentenced Feb. 6. He faces up to 10 years in federal prison and a $750,000 fine for each count of making hoax letter bomb threats and an additional five years in prison for lying to the investigating postal inspectors.