St. Thomas student charged over hoax bomb threats against the university

The 20-year-old from Blaine is facing federal charges.
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University of St. Thomas

A student has been charged with making bomb threats against the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul.

Federal charges have been filed against Ray Persaud, 20, of Blaine, who was arrested on Tuesday morning, Minnesota's U.S. Attorney Erica MacDonald announced.

Persaud is accused of making bomb threats on three separate days against the university, with the first in April and the most recent just earlier this month.

In the Apr. 17 incident, Persaud, a St. Thomas student himself, allegedly called in the threat three times that morning, causing the university to evacuate and its entire St. Paul campus to close, including a child care center.

The FBI determined the call came from a Internet Protocol, or “VOIP,” using an app called TextMe, which allows users to have multiple phone numbers.

On Aug. 20, Persaud again called the university via TextMe, saying there was a bomb in the John Roach Center, causing its evacuation and closure for the day.

Then earlier this month, on Sept. 7, Persaud called the university through a different VOIP app, saying there were bombs in the O’Shaughnessy Science Center, the John Roach Center, the Anderson Student Center, and the Facilities Design Center.

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These buildings were again evacuated, but investigators were this time able to trace the origin of the call to Persaud's home address.

He has been charged with one count of using an instrumentality of interstate commerce to make a threat to kill, injure, or intimidate any individual, and to damage or destroy any building, by means of fire and explosive.

His first court appearance is Tuesday afternoon.

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