Debbie Wasserman Schultz: Suspicious package sent to Florida offices of Democrat congresswoman

The suspicious package appears to be part of a string of explosives sent to high-profile recipients

Chris Riotta
New York
Wednesday 24 October 2018 17:37
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Suspicious packages found near Clinton and Obama homes

A suspicious package sent to a Florida building housing the offices of Debbie Wasserman Schultz was being investigated Wednesday as a string of explosive devices were sent to several high-profile recipients.

The offices were reportedly evacuated, along with CNN’s offices in New York City after the Time Warner building was also sent a suspicious package.

Follow along with live updates on the suspicious packages sent to high-profile recipients.

The US Secret Service also announced Wednesday it had intercepted explosives sent to Bill and Hillary Clinton in New York, as well as former President Barack Obama’s home in Washington. A suspicious package was also being investigated within the vicinity of a California building housing the offices of Senator Kamala Harris as well as the San Diego Union Tribune.

At least two of the suspicious packages intercepted by authorities on Wednesday reportedly featured return addresses labelled with Ms Schultz’s name. A package sent to Eric Holder was reportedly returned to the congresswoman's offices, which was listed in the return label, though it wasn't immediately clear whether that was the package discovered in Florida on Wednesday.

Police in Florida confirmed they were investigating the possible suspicious package sent to the lawmaker’s Sunrise offices after a Broward Sheriff’s Office bomb squat unit and firefighters were deployed to the scene.

Suspicious packages found near Clinton and Obama homes

Other details on the package and when it was first discovered were not immediately clear. There were no initial reports of injuries.

In a Wednesday statement, the US Secret Service said it “has intercepted two suspicious packages addressed to Secret Service protectees,” naming Ms Clinton and Mr Obama as the recipients.

“The packages were immediately identified during routine mail screening procedures as potential explosive devices and were appropriately handled as such,” the statement said. “The protectees did not receive the packages nor were they at risk of receiving them.”

The Secret Service added that it had already “initiated a full scope criminal investigation that will leverage all available federal, state, and local resources to determine the source of the packages and identify those responsible.”

On Wednesday morning, the New York Police Department also announced it was investigating a suspicious package sent to CNN's New York offices located inside the Time Warner headquarters.

An employee of Mr Soros first located the suspicious package located at his residency earlier this week, placing it in a deeply wooded area before alerting the FBI and he Bureau of Alcohol, Firearms and Explosives.

Chappaqua is a quiet suburb in Westchester county outside of New York City. The Clintons have lived in the home since the late 1990s.

FBI officials are reportedly working with local law enforcement to follow any leads in each case, and have been combing over surveillance footage to learn whether the package found at Mr Soros’ home was hand delivered or sent by mail.

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The suspicious packages sent to Mr Soros — a major donor to the Democratic party — and former high-power Democratic leadership arrived during an especially tumultuous midterm election season, as both sides attempt to address an apparent lack of civility in the nationwide political discourse.

Officials declined to provide immediate details on the packages found Wednesday.

However, a senior official expressed "concern" over the similarities between the packages discovered at the Clinton and Soros residencies.

A press conference with the New York Police Department has been scheduled for this afternoon.

More follows…

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