A man jailed in the Florida Panhandle on fraud charges also is facing unrelated allegations in Georgia that he planned to extort banks by hiding pipe bombs in flowerpots and lanterns.
David Allen Nesbitt, 49, is charged with making the bombs, Hampton, Ga., police investigator Billy Ward said Tuesday. He said Nesbitt's mother-in-law found them when she was moving his belongings.
The bombs may be connected to never-mailed letters threatening banks and demanding money that were found in Nesbitt's Bonifay home, Ward said.
"I guess he was going to extort money," Ward said. "That's all we could figure. When he was arrested, it really spoiled everything for him."
Nesbitt and his wife, Sherry, 45, were arrested in Georgia last month on a Florida fugitive warrant charging them with an investment scheme in Holmes County.
Holmes Sheriff Dennis Lee said Nesbitt raised more than $100,000 for a proposed manufacturing plant in Bonifay that never was built.
"It sounded promising," Lee said. "I think that's why our people jumped on it. Our county is economically deprived. We need industry, but it went sour."
Sherry Nesbitt's mother found the bombs after the couple had been returned to Florida. She accidentally dropped a flowerpot, tearing a decorative wrapping and exposing a hidden pipe bomb.
"It looked like a real flower pot," Ward said. "They were dressed up to look real and they were live."
David Nesbitt is charged in Florida with grand theft, fraudulent transactions, sale of non-registered security bonds and sale of securities by a non-registered person. Sherry Nesbitt is charged with grand theft.
Ward said the husband likely will return to Georgia to face bomb charges after his case is resolved in Florida. The wife apparently was uninvolved with the bombs, he said.
Court records do not indicate that David Nesbitt has a lawyer.