Chemist, Dalbir Sethi, Charged In New Jersey Car Bomb Explosion

Employer, FMC, manufactured U.S. nerve gas munitions in 1960s


October 7, 2008 - San Francisco, CA - - On the evening of September 25 the Plainsboro Road community of Cranberry, New Jersey was rocked by a then mysterious car explosion.

Called to the scene immediately after the incident, which was reported as merely an arson car fire, authorities quickly determined that the car had been destroyed by an explosion. Though denying they were involved at the time, the FBI's Joint Terrorism Task Force [JTTF] quickly initiated an investigation which led to the arrest today of Dalbir Sethi 65, a chemist with FMC corporation, a company which produces insecticides and other chemical products for agricultural, industrial and consumer markets.

The widely published Sethi [see his patent application, Recovery of Aqueous Hydrogen Peroxide in Auto-Oxidation H2O2 Production,] is believed to have smuggled volatile chemicals home from his FMC workplace.

A search of country records shows that the home where the blast occurred was owned by Dalbir and Pervesh Sethi. [source,] Sethi also owned an industrial warehouse space.

FMC, Sethi?s employer, has an interesting history

In 1959 FMC Corporation was awarded a contract to build a chemical weapons production facility in Newport Indiana. Starting operations in 1961 it produced approximately 4,400 tons of VX nerve gas munitions. [see,]

VX is classified as an organophosphate based nerve gas and is most widely known as the agent responsible for killing 6,000 sheep at Dugway, Utah in the late 1960s, through an accidental release. More recently VX gas is known to have been Sadam Hussein's chemical weapon of choice.

According to reports, authorities are insisting that the blast was accidental and not related to terrorism. [source,]

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