The co-founder of FanX Salt Lake was found guilty by a federal jury in Hawaii of threatening to bomb Utah buildings, including the Salt Lake Temple, the Matheson Courthouse, the Salt Lake City mayor's office, the University of Utah and the state Capitol.

Bryan Brandenburg, 64, lives in Hawaii and was arrested there for making bomb threats. The threats began after he emailed the 3rd District Court in Salt Lake City to follow up on whether his divorce had been granted.

Brandenburg's jury trial was held at the Hawaii district court, and lasted four days beginning on July 18. It included testimony from multiple Utahns who received emails with bomb threats from him.

The jury began deliberating the case around 11:15 p.m. Friday, and it reached a guilty verdict less than two hours later.

He was found guilty of transmitting a threat in interstate commerce and six counts of conveying false information concerning the use of an explosive — which the jury found he did willfully and maliciously in each instance.

Brandenburg took an "indefinite leave of absence" from FanX in 2018 and he sold his share of the company in 2019, so he was not involved in the company during the times he made threats that led to this conviction.

The threats

On March 8, 2022, he emailed a court employee asking whether his divorce was final and learned it would take 60 days for the decision to be made. After 60 days he emailed again, and then again a few days later when he used an expletive. After a court employee told him his language would not be tolerated, he emailed: "So go (expletive) yourself. All of you," and "I guess I'll just have to bomb the city."

On May 4, 2022, Brandenburg sent emails threatening to bomb multiple buildings.

One email states, "We're still going to bomb the 3rd District Courthouse. Hae a nice day," according to charging documents. Subsequent emails said, "Now we're going to bomb the State Capital (sic)...," and "And then .... we'll bomb the mayor's office ..." Another email said "And then, we're going to level the sacred temple," according to the charges. Investigators say Brandenburg also threatened to bomb "every Ivy League School," and the federal courthouse in San Diego "to teach them a lesson."

Brandenburg had been involved in a trademark lawsuit between San Diego Comic-Con International and FanX, which was previously called Salt Lake Comic Con. The company ended up paying almost $4 million in legal fees after a San Diego jury found it had violated trademark rules with the previous name.

On May 6, 2022, Brandenburg also threatened to bomb the University of Utah Center for Medical Innovation and Hall Labs in emails to four members of the media in Salt Lake City.

Brandenburg called the U. center "Frankenstein Inc.," saying, "They put illegal medical devices in me without my knowledge or permission with U of U Center for Medical Innovation. We're bombing both campuses today for crimes against humanity," according to charging documents.

Members of the media reported the emails and the center was evacuated before police found the threat to be a hoax.

He was interviewed by FBI agents in Hawaii later that day, and acknowledged he had sent the emails to get attention and pressure the court and his family and to "get his money back."

Request for acquittal

The same day the guilty verdict was reached, Brandenburg asked the court to consider an acquittal for each count. He argued there was "insufficient evidence presented at trial to justify a verdict of guilt."

He argued in the motion that prosecutors did not show he had the state of mind needed for the interstate commerce threat charge. Brandenburg said this email was sent to people he was familiar with and he did not think it would be viewed as a threat. The motion said a recipient being fearful does not show whether a threat was sent.

To address other charges, his attorneys argued there was not enough evidence that Brandenburg acted "with a malicious state of mind" when emailing court employees, media and others. The motion said he was sending emails to get attention, did not expect them to be taken seriously and had a purpose of trying to publicize his story.

For the final charge, Brandenburg argued the lack of response to his previous threats strengthened his belief that no one would take the threats seriously.

The sentencing for Brandenburg is scheduled for Nov. 9.