Craigslist job allegedly turns out to be murder-for-hire plot
OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR/CNN) – An Oklahoma woman allegedly posed as an intelligence agent and tried to use Craigslist to solicit a woman to murder her former husband.
Officials say Danielle Dana Layman, 37, posted an ad on Craigslist about a 10-day overseas acting job, but when Tinsley Keefe responded to the ad, she was allegedly asked to kill Layman’s ex-husband.
“I was scared from the beginning because right during the meeting, she said if you tell anybody, then we’re both going to be dead,” Keefe said.
According to a criminal complaint, Keefe and Layman met at a Ponca City, OK, cafe on May 9 to discuss the “acting” job, and while there, Layman allegedly claimed to be an Israeli intelligence agent.
Layman then showed Keefe a PowerPoint presentation regarding the logistics of a murder and the identity of the target, the complaint says. It wasn’t until weeks after the meeting Keefe learned the alleged mark, an Israeli taxi driver, was Layman’s ex-husband.
“This was not about killing an ex-husband. You were going out to kill ISIS because this guy was transporting weapons,” Keefe said she was told.
The instructions detailed in the complaint revealed how to seek out the target and add ricin to his coffee. Ricin is an extremely hazardous substance derived from castor beans.
Keefe says she was told to administer the ricin over a series of days, poisoning the man.
“She was like, ‘Well, American females, tourists, would be less likely to be suspected of doing stuff,’” Keefe said.
Once the “target” was dead, Keefe says she was told she would be paid $4,000 in cash by Layman herself.
The story didn’t make sense, and on the advice of a friend, Keefe reported the incident to the FBI.
On June 30, the FBI executed a search warrant at Layman’s house.
The affidavit states agents found castor beans in the kitchen, along with a mortar and pestle with residue that could be remnants of ground castor beans as well as instructions on how to make ricin.
Layman was arrested later the same day and charged with use of interstate commerce facilities in the commission of murder for hire. If convicted, she could face 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.
Reports in Israel detailed Layman was in a custody battle over visitation rights with her ex-husband.
She will remain in federal custody pending further proceedings. A detention hearing is set for July 11.
As for Keefe, she says she’s ready to put the bizarre episode behind her.
“You hear weird crap about Craigslist all the time, but at the same time, I definitely wasn’t expecting that,” Keefe said.
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