CNN Pipe Bomb Suspect Charged in 30-Count Indictment

Nellie Chapman
November 10, 2018

Other targets included former U.S. Presidents Bill Clinton and Barack Obama, former Vice President Joe Biden, and Democratic U.S. Senators Cory Booker of New Jersey and Kamala Harris of California.

Cesar Sayoc, 56, of South Florida was arrested on October 26, five days after the first discovery of the improvised explosive devices were sent to targets including former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, actor Robert De Niro and former President Barack Obama. The following morning, a string of similar packages were discovered across the country, including one which was found in the mailroom of CNN's midtown headquarters.

"Cesar Sayoc allegedly targeted former high-ranking officials such as President Barack Obama, President Bill Clinton, Vice President Joe Biden, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, and others, as well as CNN, by sending explosive packages to them through the U.S. Postal Service", said Geoffrey Berman, U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of NY. They also identified him by studying his social media accounts, analyzing the contents of the posts as well as their misspellings. He had been living in a van covered with stickers of Trump and showing images of some Trump opponents with crosshairs over their faces.

He was already in the criminal justice system due to prior arrests in Florida, NPR's Gabriela Saldivia reported.

Similar pipe bomb packages that were en route to the Clintons and the Obamas yesterday (October 24), were intercepted in Delaware and NY on Thursday after they were sent to former Vice President Joe Biden and Robert De Niro.

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DK CEO Ian Hudson released an internal memo making the announcement, according to a report from Publishers Weekly . Reported initially on EGM Now , the news was confirmed by the Dorling Kindersley division of Penguin Random House.

The FBI seized a laptop from the van which contained lists of mailing addresses that matched labels on the envelopes, according to prosecutors.

In a written statement, Manhattan U.S. Attorney Geoffrey Berman called the pipe bomb mailings "an assault on a nation that values the rule of law, a free press, and tolerance of differences without rancor or resort to violence". Officials say that Sayoc also used his phone to conduct a range of misspelled internet searches, like "hilary Clinton hime address" and "address kamila harrias". He was held without bail.

Sayoc appeared in NY earlier this week.

The case was randomly assigned to U.S. District Judge Jed S. Rakoff.

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