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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of Minnesota

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, September 24, 2019

St. Thomas Student Charged For Hoax Bomb Threats Against The University's St. Paul Campus

United States Attorney Erica H. MacDonald announced a federal criminal complaint against RAY GHANSHAM PERSAUD, 20, for calling in bomb threats to the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, Minnesota.[1] PERSAUD was arrested this morning and will make his initial appearance today at 2:00 pm before Magistrate Judge David T. Schultz in U.S. District Court in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

According to the allegations in the criminal complaint and law enforcement affidavit, on April 17, 2019, PERSAUD called the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, Minnesota and said there was a bomb on campus, specifically mentioning McNeely Hall. PERSAUD called the University of St. Thomas three times that morning making bomb threats. As a result, the University evacuated and closed its entire St. Paul campus, including a child care center located in one of the buildings. The FBI determined that the calls came from a Voice Over Internet Protocol, or “VOIP,” telephone number serviced by TextMe, an app that allows users to have multiple telephone numbers. On August 20, 2019, PERSAUD again called the University of St. Thomas via TextMe and said there was a bomb in the John Roach Center, a classroom building on the St. Paul campus, which was subsequently evacuated and closed for the day. On September 17, 2019, PERSAUD called the University of St. Thomas again, through a different VOIP app, and stated that there were bombs in the O’Shaughnessy Science Center, the John Roach Center, the Anderson Student Center, and the Facilities Design Center. All four buildings were subsequently evacuated. Investigators were able to trace the origin of the September 17, 2019, calls to PERSAUD’s home address in Blaine, Minnesota.

This case is the result of an investigation conducted by the FBI and the Saint Paul Police Department.

This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney John Docherty.

Defendant Information:

RAY GHANSHAM PERSAUD, 20

Blaine, Minn.

Charges:

  • Using an instrumentality of interstate commerce to make a threat to kill, injure, or intimidate any individual, and to damage or destroy any building, by means of fire and explosive, 1 count 

 

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United States Attorney’s Office, District of Minnesota: (612) 664-5600

 

 

[1] The charges contained in the complaint are merely accusations, and the defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

Component(s): 
Updated September 24, 2019