Sang Ngoc Ung pleaded guilty in April to a host of crimes associated with a June 10, 2013 fire he set at a relative's home in Seattle. Prosecutors say the 54-year-old also tried to firebomb a second home, but the device didn't work.
Prior to the firebombing, Ung had been pressuring family members in Seattle over a $20,000 debt he believed he was owed, according to prosecutors. The family tried to pay off a portion of the debt, but prosecutors say Ung continued to threatened them.
In May of 2013, Ung traveled from his Florida home to Seattle in an effort to collect the money. Cell phone records show him in the area of the home that was burned and the home where officers found the defective firebomb, according to prosecutors. Police found other evidence at the crime scene that tied Ung to both homes.
"This defendant earned every day of this sentence," U.S. Attorney Jenny Durkan said in a news release. "He attempted to rule his victims through fear and violence," said U. S. Attorney Jenny A. Durkan. "He endangered not just his targeted victims, but those who live nearby and all first responders."
Ung pleaded guilty to collection of extension of credit by extortionate means, interstate travel in aid of racketeering activity, unlawful possession of a destructive device and carrying a firearm during and in relation to a crime of violence.
The case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Todd Greenberg.