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Florida man guilty to mailing bombs to Trump foes



NEW YORK (AP) – A Florida man pleaded guilty to sending pipe bombs to CNN and prominent critics of President Donald Trump in a wave of attacks with no one but spread fear of political violence across the U.S. Cesar Sayoc, 57, sobbed as he entered the plea before a federal judge in New York.

"I'm extremely sorry," he said, adding that he never did. intended for the devices to explode.

He could get life in prison at sentencing Sept. 12 on 65 counts, including using weapons of mass destruction and mailing explosives with intent to kill. In exchange for his guilty plea, prosecutors dropped to a mandatory life sentence.

Sayoc was accused of sending rudimentary bombs – none of which detonated – to 16 targets, including Bill and Hillary Clinton, former Vice President Joe Biden, several members of Congress, form President Barack Obama and actor Robert De Niro. Devices were also mailed to CNN offices in New York and Atlanta

The bombs started turning up weeks before the hotly contested midterms, contributing to an already tense political environment.

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What we know suspect Cesar Sayoc, Jr.

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Cesar Altieri Sayoc was arrested on Friday, October 26, 2018, in connection with the mail bomb scare that included at least 12 suspicious packages sent to prominent Democrats from Coast to coast.

(Broward County Sheriff's Office / Handout via REUTERS)

Cesar Sayoc Jr., was arrested at the AutoZone store on State Road 7 in Plantation, Florida.

(Amy Beth Bennett / South Florida Sun Sentinel / TNS via Getty Images

Sayoc's van was covered in stickers or President Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence. It also sticks that said 'CNN Sucks.'

(Carline Jean / South Florida Sun-Sentinel via AP)

The 56-year-old was a registered Republican.

(REUTERS / Jonathan Ernst) [19659019] Social media accounts that appear to belong to a deep admiration for President Trump and the accounts also often featured bizarre conspiracy theories about Hillary Clinton.

(ABC News via AP)

Sayoc has a lengthy criminal history, including charges in for threatening to 'destructive device,' grand theft and charges for possession of a synthetic anabolic-androgenic steroid.

(Photo by Joe Raedle / Getty Images) HIDE CAPTION

SHOW CAPTION [19659025] Sayoc was arrested in late October at a Florida auto parts store. He had been living in a of plastered with Trump stickers and images of Trump opponents with crosshairs over their faces.

On Thursday, he told the judge that he made objects designed to look like pipe bombs and filled them with explosive powder from fireworks .

"Did you intend they would explode?" U.S. District Judge Jed Rakoff asked

"No, sir," Sayoc said.

"What would prevent powder from fireworks from exploding?"

"I was aware of the risk they would explode," Sayoc said.

The first of the bombs was discovered Oct. 22 in a mailbox at an estate in New York City's northern suburbs owned by the billionaire George Soros, a liberal political activist and frequent subject of conspiracy theories.

A device addressed to the Clintons was discovered the following day, followed a day later by a slew or bombs found at the homes or offices of prominent Democrats. One, addressed to form CIA director John Brennan, was sent to CNN in New York.

Others targeted included California Sen. Kamala Harris and New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker

Over several days, investigators tracked the packages to a mail center in Florida. Prosecutors said the evidence against the DNA that linked him to the devices and fingerprints on two of them


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