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Here’s what we know about Cesar Sayoc, the pipe bomb suspect arrested in Florida – National

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LATEST UPDATES: 

  • Cesar Sayoc has been charged with 5 federal crimes and faces up to 48 years in prison
  • 13 IEDs discovered so far; more packages could still be in transit
  • FBI Director Christopher Wray said ‘these are not hoax devices’
  • The suspect’s fingerprint was found on at least one of the packages
  • Sacramento authorities are investigating a suspicious package addressed to California Sen. Kamala Harri

Cesar Sayoc, the man arrested in connection with the sending of at least a dozen parcel bombs to high-profile Democrats and critics of U.S. President Donald Trump, is a 56-year-old registered Republican with a criminal history in Florida.


READ MORE:
Trump-supporting conspiracy theorists say pipe bombs are a ‘false flag’ set up by Democrats

Sayoc was born in 1962. The Orlando Sentinel reported that he was born in Brooklyn, N.Y. He is a resident of Aventura, Fla., NY1 reported. 

The Aventura address on record for Sayoc is not primary residence, and is believed to belong to his mother, the Aventura police department said in a press conference. Furthermore, the only interaction Sayoc has had with Aventura police to date has been in regards to minor traffic stops and violations, officials said.

However, court records revealed a history of arrests in Florida on various offences, the majority of which are theft-related.

In 2002, he was charged with threatening to bomb a power utility for trying to shut off his lights, telling a company representative it would be “worse than September 11th,” according to a Miami police report. Over the years, he was arrested for domestic violence, theft and fraud.

WATCH: Cesar Sayoc appears in handcuffs as FBI agents transport bomb suspect to new location






The South Florida Sun-Sentinel reported that investigators tracked Sayoc to the city of Plantation in Broward County, Fla. He was arrested there at an AutoZone auto parts store, where two witnesses told Reuters they heard a loud blast at the time of the arrest.

READ MORE: Cesar Sayoc arrested in U.S. pipe bomb investigation

Local television stations showed investigators using a large blue tarp to cover Sayoc’s white van, which was plastered with decals and stickers, before removing it on a truck.

WATCH: Police surround van in Plantation, FL following news suspect arrest in connection to pipe bombs







The van had numerous stickers showing President Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence, as well as a “CNN SUCKS” sign, according to a screenshot posted on Twitter by a CNN reporter.

Photos of a van being investigated by authorities in connection with the pipe bomb deliveries.

NBC via Global News

Sayoc is a promoter, booking agent and “live entertainment owner,” according to his LinkedIn profile, which listed him as the owner of International Gold Productions.  In addition, reports indicate that Sayoc has also worked as a male stripper, an aspiring professional wrestler and a store manager.

WATCH: Cesar Sayoc, pipe bomb suspect, charged with 5 federal crimes: DOJ






He filed for bankruptcy in Miami in 2012, according to court records. At the time, Sayoc said he lived with his mother in Aventura, Florida, and listed a $1,150 tax refund and a 2001 Chevy Tahoe vehicle as his only assets.

WATCH: Two new suspicious packages discovered in Florida and New York







NBC reported that DNA evidence played a role in his arrest.

The development came amid a coast-to-coast manhunt for the person responsible for a series of explosive devices addressed to Democrats including former President Barack Obama, former Vice-President Joe Biden and Hillary Clinton. Law enforcement officials said they had intercepted a dozen packages in states across the country.

Map showing the locations of packages across the U.S.

The Canadian Press

No one had claimed responsibility for the parcel bombs, which were denounced by authorities as terrorism, and came less than two weeks ahead of U.S. congressional elections that could alter the balance of power in Washington.

WATCH: Trump says he heard bomb suspect was supporter of his






Trump commented on Sayoc’s arrest Friday, saying that he had heard Sayoc was one of his supporters.

Trump also said he will not contact former President Barack Obama or the other people targeted by the bomber.

— With files from Reuters and the Canadian Press

© 2018 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.



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FOREIGN NEWS

Catholic Bishops react to military coup in Mali

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Catholic Bishops react to military coup in Mali

Contrary to the expectations of the people, the leadership of the Episcopal Conference of Mali (CEM) has termed the Tuesday, August 18 military coup in the West African nation as “regrettable” and “a big failure for our democracy” and called for a change of mentality if the country has to put an end to coups.

In an interview with ACI Africa Wednesday, August 19, made available to RECOWACERAO NEWS AGENCY, RECONA, the President of CEM, Bishop Jonas Dembélé said that the governance challenges the country is facing can be managed through dialogue.

“The military coup that led to the ousting of President Ibrahim Boubacar Keïta is regrettable because we are in a state of law and democracy. This is the second time that Mali has had a military coup as a result of the way in which the country is governed. It is a big failure for our democracy even if there were reasons for it,” Bishop Dembélé told ACI Africa.

“It is true that our country has serious challenges including bad governance, the poor management of the economy, corruption, insecurity and so on,” Bishop Dembélé said and probed, “Why is it that we Malians have not managed to engage in dialogue to be able to discuss these problems and face up to these challenges responsibly?”

“Our leaders, our people lack transparency, they hate those who speak the truth and advocate for good governance. This mentality must change for our country to move on,” the Prelate told ACI Africa August 19.

Bishop Dembélé who is a frontline member of RECOWA-CERAO urged the military officials “to ensure a return to democracy as promised but most especially ensuring the new leadership of the country put the people first and tackle the security challenges facing the nation.”

Asked about the role of the Church in the current crisis, the 57-year-old Prelate noted, “For us the Catholic Church in Mali, our role is to preach peace; our role is to preach dialogue. We shall continue in this path of dialogue for peace just like Cardinal Jean Zerbo and some religious leaders initiated.”

“In a state of law, power is not in the hands of certain individuals but to the people. The anger of our people led to this crisis, but we must work for peace and reconciliation in Mali,” Bishop Dembélé said.

He continued in recollections, “The Bishops in Mali have always issued messages before every election in our country sounding the alert and inviting the government to organize transparent elections, ensure good governance and better management of resources.”
“But it seems our messages are never taken into consideration that is why we find ourselves in this situation today,” the Local Ordinary of Kayes Diocese told ACI Africa and added, “If the opinion of the Episcopal Conference of Mali is needed to mediate in bringing back stability and peace in the country, then we are ready.”

As a way forward, the Bishop urged the people of God in Mali to “seek the path to conversion” and to accept dialogue in the spirit of truth and honesty.
“We all want change in our

country, but this change can only be possible if individually we seek the path to conversion. It is for Malians be they Muslims or Christians or members of traditional religion, to do an examination of conscience and accept personal and community conversion in order to engage in sincere dialogue,” he said.

The Malian Prelate added, “Now there is this coup d’état to demand change we really wonder where change should come from. As long as we don’t change our behavior, our mentality, we will always have a repeat of the current situation.”

On Tuesday, August 18, President Keita announced his resignation and dissolved parliament hours after mutinying soldiers detained him at gunpoint, Aljazeera reported.
“For seven years, I have with great joy and happiness tried to put this country on its feet. If today some people from the armed forces have decided to end it by their intervention, do I have a choice? I should submit to it because I do not want any blood to be shed,” President Keita said August 18 during the televised address to the nation.

Rev. Fr. George Nwachukwu
RECOWACERAO NEWS AGENCY, RECONA

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Harris accepts VP nomination

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Harris accepts VP nomination

Senator Kamala Harris formally accepted the Democratic nomination for vice president on Wednesday following a scathing speech by former President Barack Obama, who said the fate of the nation” depends entirely on the outcome of this election.”

Both Mr. Obama and Harris stressed the importance of voting, with Harris saying “we’re all in this fight together.” Harris sounded an optimistic note by highlighting her personal history and the promise of America, saying she was “so inspired by a new generation.”

“Make no mistake, the road ahead will not be not easy,” she said. “We will stumble. We may fall short. But I pledge to you that we will act boldly and deal with our challenges honestly. We will speak truths. And we will act with the same faith in you that we ask you to place in us.” She called Mr. Trump a “predator” in a speech that came after Mr. Obama issued his most forceful rebuke of his successor to date, saying Mr. Trump “hasn’t grown into the job because he can’t.”

“This president and those in power — those who benefit from keeping things the way they are — they are counting on your cynicism,” Mr. Obama said. “They know they can’t win you over with their policies. So they’re hoping to make it as hard as possible for you to vote, and to convince you that your vote doesn’t matter.

That’s how they win. That’s how they get to keep making decisions that affect your life, and the lives of the people you love. That’s how the economy will keep getting skewed to the wealthy and well-connected, how our health systems will let more people fall through the cracks. That’s how a democracy withers, until it’s no democracy at all.”

Mr. Obama and Hillary Clinton, speaking earlier in the night, both said they had hoped Mr. Trump would rise to the occasion. But they both stressed what they called his failures while in office, with Mr. Obama saying Mr. Trump has shown “no interest in treating the presidency as anything but one more reality show that he can use to get the attention he craves.”

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Mali coup leaders vow to hold elections as history repeats itself

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Mali coup leaders vow to hold elections as history repeats itself

The Malian soldiers who forced President Ibrahim Boubacar Keita to resign in a coup promised early Wednesday to organize new elections after their takeover was swiftly condemned by the international community.

In a statement carried overnight on state broadcaster ORTM, the mutinous soldiers who staged Tuesday’s military coup identified themselves as the National Committee for the Salvation of the People led by Colonel Major Ismael Wagué.

“With you, standing as one, we can restore this country to its former greatness,” Wagué said, announcing that borders were closed and that a curfew was going into effect from 9 p.m. to 5 a.m

The news of Keita’s departure was met with jubilation by anti-government demonstrators in the capital, Bamako, and alarm by former colonial ruler France and other allies and foreign nations.

The U.N. Security Council scheduled a closed meeting Wednesday August 19, 2020 afternoon to discuss the unfolding situation in Mali, where the U.N. has a 15,600-strong peacekeeping mission. Keita, who was democratically elected in a 2013 landslide and re-elected five years later, still had three years left in his term.

But his popularity had plummeted, and demonstrators began taking to the streets calling for his ouster in June.

West African regional bloc ECOWAS had sent mediators to try and negotiate a unity government but those talks fell apart when it became clear that the protesters would not accept less than Keita’s resignation.

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