An artist who was linkurl:charged with mail and wire fraud;http://www.the-scientist.com/article/display/22260/ for receiving postal packages of bacteria to be used in his artwork has been cleared. A federal judge on Monday (April 21) dismissed the case against Steven Kurtz, an art professor at the State University of New York at Buffalo, saying that the government indictment against him "is insufficient on its face," The Buffalo News reported. Richard Ebright, a microbiologist at Rutgers University, wrote in an E-mail to The Scientist: "Dismissal was the correct action. The case had no substance. None." Kurtz was indicted in 2004 along with University of Pittsburgh geneticist Robert Ferrell, who had purchased the bacterial cultures for Kurtz and sent them to him. That charge carries a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison under the Patriot Act, and both Kurtz and Ferrell originally pled not guilty. Ferrell linkurl:pled guilty;http://www.the-scientist.com/blog/display/53702/ to a misdemeanor charge of...
The Chronicle of Higher Education,
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