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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Western District of Oklahoma

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Monday, July 3, 2017

Ponca City Woman Charged with Using Interstate Facilities to Solicit Murder with Ricin

Oklahoma City, OklahomaDANIELLE DANA LAYMAN, 37, of Ponca City, Oklahoma, has been charged by criminal complaint with soliciting someone to murder her former husband with ricin, announced Mark A. Yancey, United States Attorney for the Western District of Oklahoma.

 

According to the complaint and supporting affidavit, filed July 1, 2017, Layman used craigslist to locate someone interested in a "10 day gig overseas." On May 9, 2017, she met in Ponca City with a person who responded to the craigslist post. According to the affidavit, Layman gave that person written instructions on traveling to Tel Aviv, Israel, and using ricin to poison a specific taxi driver in exchange for $4,000 plus expenses. The affidavit states that Layman also gave the person a baggie that she claimed contained the ricin to be used in the murder. Ricin is an extremely hazardous substance derived from castor beans. According to the complaint, the taxi driver in Tel Aviv appears to be Layman’s former husband.

 

On June 30, 2017, the FBI executed a search warrant at Layman’s residence in Ponca City. The affidavit states that agents found castor beans in the kitchen, along with a mortar and pestle with residue that could be remnants of ground castor beans. According to the affidavit, agents also found instructions on how to make ricin. Layman was arrested late the same day. She appeared before U.S. Magistrate Judge Charles Goodwin this afternoon and will remain in federal custody pending further proceedings.

 

If convicted of using a facility of interstate commerce to solicit murder, Layman could be sentenced to ten years in prison, three years of supervised release, and a fine of $250,000.

 

Reference is made to the complaint affidavit and court record for further information. The public is reminded that Layman is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.

 

This case is the result of an investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys David P. Petermann and Ashley Altshuler.

Updated July 4, 2017