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Wednesday, February 12, 2003 - Page updated at 12:00 AM

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Government: Port Angeles man plotted to kill federal prosecutor

The Associated Press

SEATTLE — Months after he was charged with trying to blow up a motel with a pipe bomb, a Port Angeles man plotted to have the federal prosecutor handling his case killed, court documents allege.

The documents, filed in U.S. District Court in Tacoma, explain why Assistant U.S. Attorney Bruce Miyake was pulled off the case of Evert Linnell Eoff earlier this month. Andrew C. Friedman and Kelly L. Harris were assigned to replace Miyake.

“As a result of Eoff’s actions, it no longer is ethically possible for Bruce Miyake to serve as the prosecutor in this case,” U.S. Attorney John McKay wrote.

The alleged plot clearly touched a nerve at the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Seattle, where prosecutors are still reeling from the unsolved slaying of another federal prosecutor, Thomas C. Wales, in October 2001. One official declined to discuss Eoff’s case, saying, “It’s too sensitive.”

Eoff and Robert A. Stanard, both of Port Angeles, were arrested during a traffic stop in Sequim on Nov. 13, 2001, the Peninsula Daily News reported. Police said they had a pipe bomb in their car and were on their way to the Fairmount Motel.

The two men were first charged federally last April 24. That indictment accused them of trying to blow up the motel.

A superseding indictment last Dec. 19 alleged that Eoff, Stanard and at least one other person were conspiring to kill another individual, identified only as A M, by placing a bomb outside that person’s motel room. Port Angeles police said the pair were targeting a motel guest who had reported a crime the day before.

Eoff and Stanard are now charged with conspiracy, carrying explosives during a felony, using or carrying a destructive device during a crime of violence, attempted malicious destruction of a building, and possession of an unregistered destructive device. Stanard faces an additional count of being a felon in possession of a firearm.

They have pleaded innocent, and Tacoma attorney Michael Schwartz, who represents Eoff, said yesterday that his client also denies being involved in the alleged assassination plot.

“Mr. Eoff denies the allegations,” Schwartz said. “As his counsel, I have received no information from the government, though we have been informed that an indictment is pending.”

A federal prisoner who is serving time on bank fraud charges told The Associated Press this month that Eoff approached him and another man — whom he identified as a high-ranking member of a white supremacist prison gang — last year at the Federal Detention Center in SeaTac. Eoff wanted Miyake killed, said the prisoner, who is seeking federal witness protection and asked that his name not be used.

The prisoner said he immediately told his attorney, Jim Vonasch, about the matter, and Vonasch contacted federal authorities.

Investigators spoke with the prisoner, who said he persuaded the member of the white supremacist gang to cooperate with the government.

The white supremacist gang member provided Eoff with the name of a person who would carry out the hit. But, unbeknownst to Eoff, that person was actually working for the federal investigators, the prisoner said. Eoff agreed to pay $20,000 in cash and property in exchange for Miyake’s death, the prisoner said.

Federal authorities contacted by the AP would not corroborate the prisoner’s account, nor would the prisoner’s attorney. Stanard’s lawyer, Paula Olson, did not immediately return a call seeking comment yesterday.

However, in court papers filed Feb. 4, prosecutors wrote that they planned to seek an indictment this week related to the alleged assassination plot. They also were considering whether to seek obstruction of justice charges against Eoff’s co-defendant, Stanard.

Wales, a veteran federal prosecutor who handled white-collar criminal cases, was shot to death the night of Oct. 11, 2001, in his home in Seattle’s Queen Anne neighborhood. There have been no arrests.

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