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Press Release

Windham Man Sentenced to 25 Years for Mailing Cyanide Resulting in Death, Fraud and Witness Tampering

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of Maine

Portland, Maine:  United States Attorney Halsey B. Frank announced that Sidney P. Kilmartin, 56, of Windham, Maine was sentenced today in U.S. District Court by Judge John A. Woodcock, Jr. to a total of 25 years in prison, a total of 5 years of supervised release, and a total of $1041 in restitution for mailing injurious articles (cyanide) resulting in death, wire fraud, mail fraud and witness tampering. On October 3, 2016, the defendant pleaded guilty to wire and mail fraud charges.  On October 11, 2016, a jury found him guilty of mailing cyanide resulting in death, wire and mail fraud, and witness tampering.

At trial, evidence showed that the defendant acquired potassium cyanide and thereafter advertised to sell it on an internet blogsite devoted to suicide. Between September 2012 and May 2013, he communicated by email with hundreds of depressed and suicidal people around the world offering the cyanide, and accepted payments for it. To some of those victims, he mailed Epsom salts instead of cyanide. When one victim in England did not die after he ingested Epsom salts, that victim complained to the FBI and told the defendant he had done so.  Thereafter, the defendant sent the victim real cyanide that resulted in his death in December 2012. The defendant asked that victim to destroy evidence of their interaction. At the time the defendant was engaged in these activities, he was under the supervision of a Maine state psychiatric hospital pursuant to a not guilty by reason of insanity adjudication for a 2007 aggravated assault.

In pronouncing sentence, Judge Woodcock observed that Mr. Kilmartin’s crimes were amongst the most heinous because they involved preying upon extraordinarily vulnerable people, some of whom gave heartrending testimony at trial.

In announcing the sentencing, U.S. Attorney Frank praised the work of the U.S. Postal Inspection Service and expressed gratitude for the cooperation and assistance of the Humberside Police Force (City of Hull, England).


Halsey B. Frank
United States Attorney
Tel: (207) 780-3257

Updated May 22, 2018