No reduction in $5 million bond for hit man case
The (Fort Lauderdale, Fla.) Sun Sentinel
The Dania Beach, Fla., man accused of trying to hire someone to kill his estranged wife, her family and his infant son failed to have his $5 million bond reduced Friday.
Jason Simione, 39, is charged with three counts of solicitation to commit first-degree murder, one count of possessing a destructive device and one count of culpable negligence. He was also accused of child abuse and animal cruelty, according to court records.
During the three-day hearing, Simione took the stand to tell Broward Circuit Judge Geoffrey Cohen there was no way he could post a bond that high. Simione also expressed confidence that he would be found not guilty of all charges.
Nearly 70 handguns and assault rifles, pipe bomb components and thousands of rounds of ammunition worth more than $1 million were seized from Simione's fortified home and his office in August when the murder-for-hire plot and threats against President Barack Obama were uncovered, records showed.
Simione said he compiled the arsenal because he is the owner of a business that sells weapons and tactical gear to the military and law enforcement and he wasn't comfortable leaving some of the inventory at his Fort Lauderdale office.
Simione's attorney said the accusations are the result of bitter divorce proceedings. Jason and Megumi Simione separated in February; she filed a restraining order against her husband on Aug. 10, three days before his arrest.