Texas man arrested for allegedly sending hundreds of white powder letters

A Rowlett, Texas, was arrested on Monday after allegedly sending hundreds of white powder hoax letters from the North Texas area since December 2008.

The FBI and inspectors with the U.S. Postal Inspection Service alleged that Hong Minh Truong engaged in multiple criminal counts of false information and hoaxes. Starting in December 2008, Truong allegedly mailed more than 500 hoax letters from the North Texas area across the U.S. and to U.S. embassies abroad. The letters were sent to schools, companies, government offices and hotels, according to an FBI press release.

"For almost six years, letters containing white powder-and believed to have been mailed by the same individual-have elicited law enforcement and public safety responses from numerous local, state and federal agencies," Diego Rodriguez, the special agent in charge of the matter from the FBI's Dallas Division, said. "While it was determined that the mailings did not contain toxins or poisons, each incident required a field screening of the letter's contents, which cost taxpayer dollars and diverted first responder resources."

The FBI and the U.S. Postal Inspection Service filed a federal complaint against Truong. The government has 30 days to present the matter to a federal grand jury for indictment.

"We believe Hong Minh Truong is responsible for the hundreds of letters sent to locations worldwide, including U.S. government offices, aerospace companies, schools, daycares, and recently, hotels in the vicinity of Super Bowl XLVIII," Rodriguez said. "The ongoing investigative work of the FBI and U.S. Postal Inspection Service is to be commended."

The maximum statutory penalty Truong would face for the offense as charged would be five years in federal prison and a $250,000 fine.