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Mail Bomb Suspect Cesar Sayoc Ordered Held Without Bail

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) – The man accused of mailing pipe bombs to prominent critics of President Donald Trump faced a federal judge Tuesday in New York City.

Cesar Sayoc was transferred from Miami overnight.

Sayoc was ordered held without bail. Assistant U.S. Attorney Jane Kim said he was a serious risk to the public and was a flight risk.

Sayoc said "yes sir" whenever questioned by the judge and hugged his attorney after the hearing. He was wearing blue jail scrubs and his hair was in a ponytail.

Cesar Sayoc
credit: Cesar Sayoc

At one point during the hearing, which lasted less than 10 minutes, Sayoc told U.S. Magistrate Judge Robert Lehrburger that he understood his rights "100 percent." He appeared taken aback, however, when Lehrburger noted that Sayoc is charged with assaulting federal officials, among other counts.

His lawyers decided not to seek his release on bail after prosecutors released a letter outlining more evidence against him, including DNA linking him to 10 of the explosive devices and fingerprints on two of them.

Sayoc is scheduled to return to federal court Monday for a preliminary hearing.

The 56-year-old, born in Brooklyn, is accused of sending 15 pipe bombs to Democratic targets, including former President Barack Obama and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. Some were sent to locations in New York City and Westchester County.

Cesar Sayoc In Court
Cesar Sayoc appears in court on Nov. 6, 2018. (credit: Jane Rosenberg)

None of the devices exploded and no one was injured.

Sayoc made his first court appearance last week in Miami. He reportedly had little to say, just his name and "yes" when asked whether he understood why he was there.

He was arrested last month and charged with interstate transportation of an explosive, illegal mailing of explosives, threats against former presidents and certain other persons, threatening interstate communications and assaulting current and former federal officers.

At the time of his arrest, he was living inside a van decorated with images of Trump and anti-Democrat stickers. Police sources said he admitted making the devices before lawyering up.

According to a court filing, his fingerprints were found on two of the devices and his DNA was allegedly found on components of 10 of them.

If convicted, he faces nearly 50 years in federal prison.

(© Copyright 2018 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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