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Handwriting Analysis Fails to Link Ivins to Anthrax Letters

Handwriting Analysis Fails to Link Ivins to Anthrax Letters

World Net Daily
August 7, 2008

Casting further doubt on the FBI’s anthrax case, accused government scientist Bruce Ivins passed two polygraph tests and a handwriting analysis comparing samples of his handwriting to writing contained in the anthrax letters, U.S. officials familiar with the investigation say.

The Justice Department yesterday closed the case, announcing the late “Dr. Ivins was the only person responsible for these attacks.”

Ivins passed the first polygraph to satisfy a security requirement prior to working with the FBI as part of a team of scientists at the Fort Detrick, Md., lab who originally helped analyze the anthrax letters. He passed a second exam after he became a suspect.

WND has learned that the FBI was so frustrated with the exam results that last October authorities asked a judge for permission to search Ivins’ home and vehicles specifically for evidence of any materials, such as books, that would have helped him “defeat a polygraph.”

Also, officials confirm that FBI handwriting analysts were unable to conclusively match samples of Ivins’ handwriting with the writing on the anthrax envelopes and letters, which sounded as if they were written by jihadist accomplices of the 9/11 hijackers. The crude notes declared: “DEATH TO AMERICA. DEATH TO ISRAEL. ALLAH IS GREAT.”

Investigators also failed to uncover other critical evidence linking Ivins directly to the letters. For instance:

  • No textile fibers were found in his office, residence or vehicles matching fibers found on the scotch tape used to seal the envelopes;
  • No pens were found matching the ink used to address the envelopes;
  • Samples of his hair failed to match hair follicles found inside the Princeton, N.J., mailbox used to mail the letters.

Also, no souvenirs of the crime, such as newspaper clippings, were found in his possession as commonly seen in serial murder cases.

What’s more, the FBI could not place Ivins at the crime scene with evidence, such as gas station or other receipts, at the time the letters were mailed in September and October 2001.

While acknowledging the circumstantial nature of their case against Ivins, prosecutors argue they’re confident they would have been able to prove his guilt “beyond a reasonable doubt” in court.

They say they used new forensic technology to narrow the deadly spores used in the attacks down to a batch stored in Ivins’ lab. However, they concede that more than 100 other people – including some Arab-American scientists – had access to the batch and that the virulent Ames strain was found elsewhere.

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