An Ocala man is facing 10 years in federal prison after trying to pay someone to place explosives at several Target stores along the East Coast, the Department of Justice says.
Mark Charles Barnett, 48, is charged with possession of a destructive device affecting commerce by a previously convicted felon, a criminal complaint says.
Barnett allegedly contacted someone and tried to pay that person $10,000 to place explosives disguised in food packaging at ten different Target stores from Florida to New York. He wanted the retail giant's stock to plunge after the explosions so he could buy it back at a cheaper price, the Department of Justice says.
He gave the explosives to what the Justice Department is calling a confidential source and also gave that person a back of gloves, a mask and a license plate cover to disguise their identity from law enforcement, authorities say.
The confidential source gave the explosives to law enforcement instead. An expert determined they could cause property damage, serious injury and even death if they were to go off.
Federal agents raided Barnett's Ocala home and found components that could be used to create the explosive devices given to the confidential source.
Barnett is currently in the Marion County Jail on a violation of probation charge.