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Bizarre plot to kidnap lawyer for ransom nets 20-year sentence for Illinois man

Posted May 3, 2013 7:11 AM CDT
By Debra Cassens Weiss

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An Illinois man has been sentenced to 20 years in prison in an alleged plot to kidnap a lawyer for ransom.

Brett Nash, 46, was sentenced on Thursday after pleading guilty in December to solicitation of a crime of violence, report the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, the Riverfront Times and the Belleville News-Democrat. He admitted he planned to hold the lawyer for ransom but denied plans to murder him in a faked accident or suicide.

The targeted lawyer has not been named. He has been described as a former corporate lawyer who lives in Granite City, Ill.

Nash was accused of enlisting a co-worker as an accomplice, who wore a tape recorder to document Nash’s plot for the FBI. According to prosecutors, Nash considered various ways to force the lawyer to hand over his money. Nash considered kidnapping the lawyer and taking him home, where he would be forced write out checks for “labor,” the post-Dispatch says. Nash also considered an idea he saw on TV’s Discovery Channel in which the lawyer would be wired with fake explosives and told to go into his bank to withdraw all his money.

Prosecutors also claimed Nash planned to kill the lawyer and stage a hot-tub accident involving a cat knocking a radio into the water. Nash also implied he an had alternate plan involving guns and a staged suicide, prosecutors said.

Nash told the co-worker they could avoid shedding DNA by wearing gloves and using styling gel to keep their hair from shedding.

Nash’s lawyer had argued the plot was too ridiculous to be real.

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