• “Suspicious packages” received at multiple locations this week “contain potentially destructive devices,” the FBI said.
  • A package sent to actor Robert De Niro, a strong critic of President Trump, was removed Thursday morning from the scene where it was found, a source told CBS News.
  • Other intended recipients of suspicious packages included former President Obama, former Vice President Joe Biden, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, former CIA Director John Brennan, former Attorney General Eric Holder and liberal philanthropist George Soros.
  • All packages as of Wednesday had a return address of “Debbie Wasserman Shultz,” the FBI said.
  • The package addressed to Brennan was sent to CNN’s offices in New York City. It contained what appeared to be a live explosive device, and an envelope containing white powder.
  • A suspicious package addressed to Democratic Rep. Maxine Waters was intercepted at a House mail facility, two sources told CBS News. Later Wednesday night, the LAPD said it was investigating another package found at a mail facility near Downtown Los Angeles.

At least nine suspicious packages were sent to prominent Democrats and critics of President Trump. The latest was addressed to actor Robert De Niro and found in lower Manhattan on Thursday morning.

Other apparent bombs were sent to former President Obama, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, former Vice President Joe Biden and former CIA Director John Brennan. None of the devices have exploded, and nobody was hurt.

The FBI suspected the packages are linked and warned there could be more. In a speech Wednesday night, Mr. Trump called acts or threats of political violence “an attack on democracy itself.”

But he tweeted Thursday morning that so-called “Fake News” is causing anger in our society and said, “Mainstream Media must clean up its act, FAST!”

gfx Potentially Destructive Devices Sent To Trump Critics Prompt Massive Response

U.S. postal system being checked

A source familiar with the investigation tells CBS News all pieces of mail processed by the U.S. Postal Service are put through machines that photograph and document what they are, where they came from and where they’re headed.

It’s all a result of the post-9/11, post-anthrax world we live in, the source says.

Using what’s described as “data analytics,” investigators are now looking at mail processing facilities nationwide to check for packages that may appear similar to the others sent to top Democrats.

Security concerns kept the source form sharing specifics on how this is being carried out, but it’s one tool investigators are using to cast a wide net to quickly determine if there are any other suspicious packages out there.

Suspicious package sent to Robert De Niro

CBS News has learned that a suspicious package was sent to actor Robert De Niro, a fierce critic of President Trump.

A law enforcement source tells CBS News that at roughly 5 a.m. Thursday, security personnel at Tribeca Productions called the New York Police Department about the package, which was addressed to De Niro.

The Bomb Squad responded, X-rayed the package and determined the device inside was similar to the ones sent to other prominent Democrats and seen in pictures the NYPD distributed Wednesday.

The package appears to be from same sender, the source says.

The NYPD says it removed the device. A source tells CBS News it was taken to the NYPD bomb disposal range.

Tribeca, a neighborhood in lower Manhattan, was the scene of intense police activity Thursday morning.

Suspicious package sent to Biden, source says

A source familiar with the ongoing investigation confirms to CBS News that a suspicious package has been located that was addressed to former Vice President Joe Biden. It’s consistent with the packages sent to other leading Democrats.

The package was found in New Castle, Delaware, the source says. The timing was unclear, but it seems to have been found sometime between 7 p.m. Wednesday and early Thursday morning.

Police were out in force at Biden’s Greenville, Delaware, home Wednesday. Investigators said they did a sweep of the home and found no suspicious packages.

New Castle County police searched the property and checked the surrounding area. Biden also owns a home in Rehoboth Beach, Delaware.

It wasn’t immediately known if that home was searched, as well. On Thursday morning, law enforcement responded to a report of a suspicious package in Wilmington, Delaware, CBS News senior investigative producer Pat Milton reports.

New York investigators comb through surveillance cameras

Investigators in New York are working around the clock, poring over video from local business and other surveillance cameras in the area near the Time Warner Center in search of the courier who delivered what turned out to be a suspicious package to the building’s mail room where CNN is located. They are also looking to see if anyone may be identified as possibly doing their own pre-surveillance of the building in the days leading up to the delivery of the device.

Investigators from the FBI-NYPD Joint Terrorism Task Force — as well as bomb techs, agents from the FBI and ATF, and U.S. Secret Service – have been searching for clues or so-called “forensic digital footprints” that could lead them to the individual or individuals responsible.

The explosive devices did not blow up so investigators have a trove of potential evidence available to them. They will be able to find serial numbers and lot numbers on the devices’ components which will help them determine the stores or where online the materials to make the bombing devices were purchased.

Investigators in New York are also reviewing license plate readers located at every bridge and tunnel crossing recording every vehicle entering or leaving Manhattan.

Reporting by Pat Milton

Packages were packed with shards of glass, AP reports

The Associated Press reports the devices sent to prominent Democrats and CNN were packed with shards of glass, according to a law enforcement official.

Tests have determined that a powder found inside an envelope delivered to CNN along with a pipe bomb was harmless, a law enforcement official tells CBS News.

Trump pledges to bring suspect(s) behind suspicious packages to justice

At a “Make America Great Again” rally in Mosinee, Wisconsin, Wednesday night, President Trump said he will bring the suspect or suspects behind the recent string of suspicious packages to justice.

“My highest duty as you know as president is to keep America safe,” he said, adding that the “federal government is conducting an aggressive investigation.” He condemned threats of political violence as “an attack on our democracy itself,” and called for “all sides to come together in peace and harmony.”

Moments later, Mr. Trump also took the opportunity to criticize media coverage of politics.

“The media also has a responsibility to set a civil tone and to stop the endless hostility and constant negative and oftentimes false attacks and stories,” he said, on the same day that a suspicious package was sent to CNN.

2nd package addressed to Rep. Maxine Waters found in Los Angeles

181024 nns los angeles suspicious package Potentially Destructive Devices Sent To Trump Critics Prompt Massive Response

Local and federal authorities are investigating a suspicious package at a South Los Angeles mail facility Wed., Oct. 24, 2018, that was addressed to U.S. Rep. Maxine Waters. (Credit: CBS NEWS)

CBS News has confirmed the Los Angeles Police Department is investigating a suspicious package, addressed to Rep. Maxine Waters, at the Los Angeles Central Mail facility near Downtown Los Angeles.

“While we determine its contents and origins the facility is being evacuated,” LAPD said in a tweet.

This package appears to be similar to the ones found in New York and Washington, D.C.

LAPD said it is working with federal authorities such as the U.S. Postal Inspectors, FBI and ATF.

Investigators probe devices for clues

Multiple law enforcement sources say one of the bombs consisted of PVC tubing and used a digital clock connected to a small battery as a possible trigger device, CBS News’ Jeff Pegues reports. Pyrotechnic powder was the explosive, and in order to keep it lightweight, glass was used as shrapnel.

Investigators think whoever put the device together was trying to keep the weight down so that they could put in a mailbox without having to appear at a post office for mailing.

The six packages were all similar in appearance. The large manila envelopes with six American flag “Forever” stamps will now be analyzed at the FBI laboratory in Quantico, Virginia. Investigators will deconstruct them, looking to trace the origin of the wiring and the other components to see where and when they may have been purchased and by whom.

Packages sent to be opened in Quantico

The packages are being sent to the FBI Laboratory in Quantico, Virginia, according to a press release by the FBI. A U.S. law enforcement official told CBS News’ Andres Triay that all the bombs are going to the lab in Quantico because bomb technicians want to analyze the devices at the same lab.

Most of the packages have not been opened.

Security doubled at NYC bridges, tunnels, airports

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo is directing state law enforcement to double security at locations including LaGuardia and JFK airports, as well as mass transit systems, bridges and tunnels.

He also said he is deploying 100 additional National Guard soldiers “out of an abundance of caution.”

“Public safety is our number one priority, and we are taking all necessary precautions to ensure the safety and security of New Yorkers,” he said in a statement.

FBI: Packages had a return address of “Debbie Wasserman Shultz”

The FBI says suspicious packages received between Monday and Wednesday at multiple locations in the New York and Washington, D.C., areas and Florida “contain potentially destructive devices.”

“The packages were mailed in manila envelopes with bubble wrap interior,” the FBI said in a statement. “The packages were affixed with computer-printed address labels and six Forever stamps. All packages had a return address of ‘DEBBIE WASSERMAN SHULTZ’ [sic] in Florida.”

It said the packages were “similar” in their appearance, “as depicted in the below photograph.” The FBI said addresses on the envelope were removed for privacy reasons:

envelope Potentially Destructive Devices Sent To Trump Critics Prompt Massive Response

(Credit: FBI)

The FBI said packages identified as of Wednesday were addressed to George Soros, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, former President Obama, former CIA Director John Brennan and former Attorney General Eric Holder.

​Suspicious package removed from Wasserman Schultz’s office

The building that houses Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz’s office in Sunrise, Florida, was evacuated Wednesday after a suspicious package arrived in the mail.

The package was removed safely from the building and taken to an FBI lab where it will be examined, CBS Miami reported.

The package was originally addressed to Eric Holder, but was sent to the wrong address and returned to the return address, the office of Wasserman Schultz.

Trump on suspicious packages: “We have to unify”

President Trump said Wednesday afternoon that “acts or threats of political violence of any kind have no place in the United States of America.” He said in these times “we have to unify.”

Speaking at a White House event Wednesday, Mr. Trump said he’s been briefed about the suspicious packages sent to several top Democrats.

“The full weight of our government is being deployed to conduct this investigation and bring those responsible for these despicable acts to justice,” he said. “We will spare no resources or expense in this effort.”

He also said, “We’re extremely angry, upset, unhappy about what we witnessed this morning and we will get to the bottom of it.”

“The safety of the American people is my highest and absolute priority.”

Watch his remarks below:

NYPD: Cuomo did not receive a package bomb

The New York City Police Department said a suspicious package at New York Governor Andrew Cuomo’s office has been cleared by NYPD personnel and is unrelated to other devices.

Cuomo said earlier Wednesday that his Manhattan office had received a suspicious device.

Suspicious package to Rep. Maxine Waters intercepted

A suspicious package addressed to Democratic Rep. Maxine Waters was intercepted at a House mail facility, two sources told CBS News. The name on the return address was Debbie Wasserman Schultz.

Later on Wednesday, Waters issued a statement saying, “I have been informed by U.S. Capitol Police that my Washington, DC office was the target of a suspicious package that has been referred to the FBI. I am appreciative of the law enforcement entities who intercepted the package and are investigating this matter. I unequivocally condemn any and all acts of violence and terror.”

Two sources said the package addressed to Waters is similar to the others intercepted in New York and Washington, D.C.

Hillary Clinton thanks Secret Service

Hillary Clinton said Wednesday at a Florida fundraiser: “We are fine thanks to the men and women of the Secret Service who intercepted the package addressed to us long before it made its way to our home.”

“Everyday we are grateful for their service and commitment and obviously, never, never more than today,” she said. “But it is a troubling time isn’t it? And it’s a time of deep divisions and we have to do everything we can to bring our country together.”

Clinton was speaking at a Coral Gables fundraiser for Democratic congressional candidate Donna Shalala, a former health and human services secretary.

NYPD: Devices appear to be crude pipe bombs

John Miller, NYPD’s chief of counterterrorism, said during a news conference Wednesday that the device sent to CNN’s offices in New York appeared to be sent by the same individual who mailed devices to the homes of billionaire financier and liberal activist George Soros, Hillary Clinton and former President Obama.

Miller and FBI officials said the devices all appeared to be crude pipe bombs.

Miller said it began on Monday night with the device sent to Soros and that they’re looking at the devices as a pattern.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo said he would not be surprised if more devices are found.

“An act of terror”

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio said Wednesday: “The situation at the Time Warner Center was clearly an act of terror attempting to undermine our free press and intimidate New Yorkers.”

“But the people of this city have shown time and again that they stand up in the face of terror,” he tweeted.

At a briefing near Manhattan’s Time Warner Center, New York City Police Commissioner James O’Neill pledged to bring the perpetrators to justice.

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said “we will not allow these terrorist thugs to change the way we live our lives.”

Package sent to CNN’s offices contained device, white powder

The package sent to CNN’s offices in New York contained what appeared to be a “live explosive device,” said New York Police Commissioner James P. O’Neill. It also contained an envelope with white powder.

The package was addressed to former CIA Director John Brennan at CNN. Since leaving government, Brennan appears on television, but he works as an analyst for NBC News.

The package was found in the building’s mailroom. It was described as a pipe with wires and was sent through the U.S. Postal Service, CBS New York reported.

A photo obtained by CBS News shows the device and a package addressed to John Brennan. The return address was listed as Debbie Wasserman Schultz, although there is no reason to believe she actually sent the package.

Responses to packages by Trump administration, White House

White House press secretary Sarah Sanders condemned “the attempted violent attacks recently made against President Obama, President Clinton, Secretary Clinton and other public figures.”

“These terrorizing acts are despicable, and anyone responsible will be held accountable to the fullest extent of the law,” Sanders said in a statement Wednesday morning. “The United States Secret Service and other law enforcement agencies are investigating and will take all appropriate actions to protect anyone threatened by these cowards.”

Vice President Mike Pence said in a tweet this morning “We condemn the attempted attacks against fmr Pres Obama, the Clintons, @CNN & others. These cowardly actions are despicable & have no place in this Country.”

President Trump retweeted the vice president’s tweet, adding “I agree wholeheartedly!”

 

Suspicious package at CNN’s New York offices at Time Warner Center

10:26 a.m.: The New York City Police Department is investigating a suspicious package at the Time Warner Center in New York City, the NYPD confirmed to CBS News. The NYPD didn’t say to whom the package was addressed.

Shortly after news of the initial packages emerged Wednesday morning, authorities hastily evacuated the Time Warner Center in midtown Manhattan, where CNN’s New York offices are located. Its anchors were live on the air when an alarm rang out and members of the NYPD responded to the scene.

Police promptly shut down the area around the building. CNN said its bureau in the Time Warner Center was evacuated “as a precaution.”

An NYPD bomb squad was on its way to the Time Warner Center Wednesday morning and the entire building was evacuated. Areas around the building were also being evacuated.

CNN reported the package discovered in New York was addressed to former CIA Director John Brennan, citing city and local law enforcement sources. At noon, CNN President Jeff Zucker said in a statement that police had safely removed the package from the building.

Suspicious packages sent to homes of President Obama, Hillary Clinton

10 a.m. The Secret Service said it has intercepted suspicious packages addressed to former President Obama’s home in Washington and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s residence in Westchester County, New York. Another package discovered in New York prompted the evacuation of CNN’s offices at the Time Warner Center and an enormous police response that shut down the area around the building.

A law enforcement source told CBS News the device addressed to the Clinton home was similar to an explosive device sent to the home of billionaire financier George Soros that was discovered on Monday. The source said the package addressed to the Clinton home was sent through the U.S. Postal Service. Clinton’s home is about eight miles from Soros’ residence in the suburbs north of New York City.

In a statement Wednesday, the Secret Service saidthe packages sent to the Clinton and Obama homes were “immediately identified during routine mail screening as potential explosive devices.” Neither package was delivered to its intended address.

The packages contained crude but functional low-ordnance explosive devices, a law enforcement official told CBS News senior investigative producer Pat Milton. At least two of the devices consisted of a pipe, wires and black powder, the official said.