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Blacksmith accused in bombing returning to Arkansas

by The Associated Press | December 7, 2010 at 5:11 p.m. | Updated December 7, 2010 at 9:57 p.m.

A man accused of leaving a bomb at an Arkansas church that was being used as a voting site will be brought back to Arkansas from Washington state by U.S. marshals, a federal prosecutor said Tuesday.

Mark Krause, 40, was arrested Friday in Seattle and appeared Monday before a federal judge who ordered him taken back to Arkansas. Krause won’t be able to fight the order because extradition occurs only in state cases, said Kenny Elser, assistant U.S. attorney for the Western District of Arkansas at Fort Smith.

“Since it’s in federal court, it’s not a matter of extradition,” Elser said.

Elser said he didn’t know when Krause would arrive in Arkansas but assumed it wouldn’t be this week.

Krause was arrested for attempted use of force against those engaged in federally protected activities — voting — and possession of an unregistered firearm, according to court documents.

Authorities say an improvised explosive device was found inside a 12-ounce soda can at Osage Baptist Church in Alpena, near the northwest corner of the state, on June 8. The church was being used as a voting site during runoff elections following the primary election. Officials said the bomb could have killed anyone within 10 to 15 feet had it exploded.

Contractors cleaning out a foreclosed Huntsville residence once owned by Krause alerted authorities in November after finding printed material that described the making of explosive devices, Little Rock-based FBI Special Agent Keith Frutiger wrote in an affidavit filed in federal court.

A search of the home turned up books and manuals “related to constructing explosive devices and militia extremism” and another search found bomb-making materials, Frutiger wrote.

The device found at the church wasn’t recognized as a bomb until the day after the voting, authorities said. The morning of the election, a poll worker noticed a soft-drink can in front of the door, picked it up and moved it out of the way before later setting it on the church secretary’s desk, according to the affidavit. Authorities say 35 people voted at the polling place that day.

The next day, someone noticed there was wiring on the bottom of the can and contacted authorities, who later determined that the device was powered by several AAA-size batteries that had the skins stripped off, the affidavit said.

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