ATF seeks suspect who stole 70 lbs of explosives from Hildale bunker

Posted at 11:38 AM, Aug 28, 2015
and last updated 2015-08-28 23:47:20-04

HILDALE, Utah — The U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives is looking for a suspect who stole 70 pounds of explosives from a bunker in the border town of Hildale.

In a statement, the ATF said someone broke into a storage bunker in Hildale on August 7 and stole the high explosives. The explosives were registered and the ATF said they were lawfully permitted to the owner of the bunker. ATF special agent Michael Minichino said they’re purposely withholding details about what was taken and how, to help them get solid leads.

“If we get a tip on our tip line and someone accurately describes the explosives and the manner in which they were stolen, then we can lend a lot of credibility to that tip,” Minichino said.

The explosives act of 2003 allows private individuals to own explosives, as long as they pass an extensive background check and obtain a license from the ATF. Theft and possession of stolen explosives is a federal crime, punishable by up to 10 years in prison.

“The theft of explosives is a serious crime, and one that presents a danger to the public,” said Brian Embley, ATF Resident Agent in Charge, in a statement sent to FOX 13. “We are asking for the public’s help in our effort to apprehend and convict those responsible.”

Authorities are offering a $5,000 reward for information leading to the recovery of the stolen explosives. Anyone with information is urged to call the ATF hotline at 1-888-ATF-BOMB (1-888-283-2662) or the Washington County Sheriff’s Office.