Tags: Political Bomb Scare | pipe bombs | cesar sayoc | political violence | political persecution

Political Mail Bomber Ordered Held Without Bail in New York

a courtroom sketch of the man accused of mailing pipe bombs, cesar sayoc.
A courtroom sketch of the man accused of mailing pipe bombs, Cesar Sayoc. (Daniel Pontet/AP)

Tuesday, 06 November 2018 01:04 PM

Cesar Sayoc, accused of sending pipe bombs to prominent critics of President Donald Trump, was ordered held without bail in a New York federal court appearance Tuesday.

Sayoc, transferred from federal custody in Florida, hugged his lawyer after a hearing in which Assistant U.S. Attorney Jane Kim called him "a serious risk of danger to the public and a flight risk."

Sayoc has been accused of sending improvised explosive devices to numerous Democrats, Trump critics and media outlets in a scare that heightened tensions before the crucial midterm elections Tuesday. None of the devices exploded, and no one was injured in the pipe bomb scare.

He was arrested outside a South Florida auto parts store. He was living in a van covered with stickers of Trump and showing images of some of the president's opponents with red crosshairs over their faces.

Sayoc faces nearly 50 years in prison if convicted on five federal charges that were filed in New York because some of the devices were recovered there.

Assistant Federal Defender Sarah Baumgartel declined to comment after the hearing, in which Sayoc presented himself as polite and soft-spoken and responded "Yes, sir" to questions from the judge.

His lawyers decided not to seek his release on bail after prosecutors released a letter outlining more evidence against him, including DNA linking him to 10 of the explosive devices and fingerprints on two of them.

Other evidence includes online searches Sayoc did on his laptop and cellphone for addresses and photos of some of his intended targets, which included former President Barack Obama, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, former Vice President Joe Biden, California Sen. Kamala Harris and New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker. Packages were also mailed to CNN in New York and Atlanta.

Prosecutors say the most recent crude bomb was recovered Friday in California, addressed to the liberal activist Tom Steyer.

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Cesar Sayoc was ordered held without bail in a New York federal court appearance Tuesday after being transferred from Miami on charges of mailing pipe bombs to President Donald Trump's political opponents.
pipe bombs, cesar sayoc, political violence, political persecution
Tuesday, 06 November 2018 01:04 PM
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