Former dentist faces prison for FBI threat

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A former dentist who believed that Microsoft founder Bill Gates was sending brain-damaging "radioactive waves" through his computer is asking for leniency when he is sentenced next week for threatening to sic the Hells Angels on the FBI agent investigating him.

Anthony Dinozzi, 45, a former University of Pittsburgh football player who practiced dentistry in Youngwood and Munhall, is mentally ill and should receive a light sentence of 15 months, his public defender argued in court papers filed this week.

Senior U.S. District Judge Donetta Ambrose will sentence him Wednesday within a range of 15 to 21 months.

Mr. Dinozzi pleaded guilty in May to leaving a threatening voice message on the desk phone of FBI Agent Gregory Heeb, who had called Mr. Dinozzi's mother because her son had resumed calling the chief judge of U.S. District Court in Seattle and the head of the Seattle FBI division to urge them to arrest Bill Gates.

In the expletive-laden voice message, Mr. Dinozzi threatened to beat up the agent and have Hells Angels attack him.

Agent Heeb first encountered Mr. Dinozzi in February 2011 when he and other members of the federal airport security team were called to Pittsburgh International Airport, where Mr. Dinozzi was posing as an FBI agent and trying to board a plane to Seattle to arrest Mr. Gates and his wife, Melinda.

Mr. Dinozzi said the flight had been booked by Attorney General Eric Holder and that Mr. Gates was emitting waves through his computer that were harming his health.

The agents searched his car but eventually let him go.

In March, agents from the FBI's Joint Terrorism Task Force again interviewed Mr. Dinozzi at his parents' home in Youngwood, where he lives, because he had been calling federal officials in Washington and demanding that they arrest Mr. Gates.

A few days after that interview, Mr. Dinozzi called Agent Heeb to say he was being treated for mental illness.

The calls to Seattle stopped after that but resumed in January, so Agent Heeb called Mr. Dinozzi's mother to tell her.

Then he called in the threat.

Public Defender Tara Allen said Mr. Dinozzi has apologized for the call, said he doesn't know any Hells Angels members and needs mental health treatment rather than a long prison term.

"In the end," she wrote, "a lengthy prison sentence would serve only to punish Mr. Dinozzi for punishment's sake."

neigh_westmoreland

Torsten Ove: tove@post-gazette.com or 412-263-1510.


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