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Posted by: Staff
Date: Oct 08 2021 8:49 AM

MONTGOMERY, ALABAMA – Today, the U.S. Attorney’s Office announced that Xiaoqin Yan, 27, has been charged by criminal complaint in the United States District Court for the Middle District of Alabama with violating Title 18 U.S.C. Section 844(i), following allegations that she set multiple fires inside the First Baptist Church of Montgomery on September 30, 2021. An individual violates Section 844(i) if she or he maliciously damages or destroys, or attempts to damage or destroy, by means of fire or an explosive, any building, vehicle, or other real or personal property used in interstate or foreign commerce or in any activity affecting interstate or foreign commerce.

Acting United States Attorney Sandra J. Stewart would like to thank all of the agencies involved for their cooperative efforts and the speed and efficiency of their investigation and apprehension of the suspect, including the Montgomery Fire/Rescue Bureau of Investigations, the Montgomery Police Department, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), the U.S. Marshals Service Gulf Coast Regional Fugitive Task Force, the U.S. Postal Service, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, and the Auburn Police Department. Assistant U.S. Attorney B. Chelsea Phillips is prosecuting this case.

A criminal complaint is merely an allegation that a crime has been committed. All defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.

If convicted, Yan is facing a prison sentence of not less than 5 years and not more than 20 years. There is no parole in the federal system.

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