March 21, 2019
Florida Man Cesar Sayoc Pleading Guilty In Plot To Bomb Trump Critics

Cesar Sayoc, a man from Florida who was arrested last October for his plot to send bombs to several politicians and other political figures who are critical of President Trump, will plead guilty on Thursday, per CBS News.

The 56-year-old Sayoc had been scheduled to stand trial later this year, but will instead enter a guilty plea in Manhattan federal court Thursday.

After 16 mail bombs were sent to different addresses last October, Sayoc was arrested and charged with five federal crimes, including interstate transportation of an explosive, illegal mailing of explosives, threats against former presidents and certain other persons, threatening interstate communications, and assaulting federal officers. Sayoc was facing a total of 30 counts.

A total of 14 pipe bombs were sent to the targets, which included the offices of former President Barack Obama, former Vice President Joe Biden, and former Secretary of State and presidential candidate Hillary Clinton, as well as billionaires George Soros and Tom Steyer, several 2020 Democratic presidential candidates, and the offices of CNN. Congresswoman Maxine Waters also received one, as did former Attorney General Eric Holder.

The bomb that was sent to Obama triggered the "threats against former presidents" charge. Another bomb was meant for former CIA director John O. Brennan and was sent to him at CNN, even though Brennan is a contributor not to that network but to MSNBC.

None of the bombs exploded, and no one was killed or injured. Prosecutors claimed DNA evidence directly linked Sayoc to the bombs.

Everyone who received bombs from Sayoc was either a vocal critic of President Trump or someone who Trump himself has regularly criticized. Sayoc was also known to make violent threats on social media, in addition to a rap sheet that, per CNN, included arrests in Florida for grand theft, battery, fraud, drug possession, and probation violations. He had also been arrested in 2002 for threatening to bomb a power company and claiming that the bombing would be "worse than September 11th."

Sayoc reportedly lived in Florida in a van decorated with pro-Trump and anti-CNN stickers. Per CNN, he had something of a colorful personal history, working as a DJ and a male stripper and operating various businesses. He had also claimed falsely to have played professional soccer and to have danced with the Chippendales. Additionally, he also made questionable claims of Native American heritage.

Prosecutors said that they believed Sayoc had made the bombs in his van.