Donald Trump

Lawyers Seek 10 Years Instead of Life for Pipe Bomb Mailer

Attorneys for a Florida man who mailed crudely made pipe bombs to prominent critics of President Donald Trump weeks before the midterm elections say he should spend no more than 10 years and one month in prison.

In papers filed Monday, Cesar Sayoc's defenders cited an FBI report released last week saying the devices wouldn't have worked. The lawyers say they were intended as hoaxes and that no one was hurt.

However, prosecutors countered in court papers filed Monday that Sayoc should receive life in prison to "adequately deter acts of domestic terrorism aimed at silencing and intimidating government officials." They say he hasn't "fully accepted responsibility."

Sayoc faces a mandatory 10-year prison term and up to life after pleading guilty to explosives-related charges. He's to be sentenced Aug. 5.

Sayoc has been held without bail since his arrest in late October outside a South Florida auto parts store. He had been living in his van, which was plastered with Trump stickers and images of crosshairs superimposed over the faces of Trump opponents.

Since being imprisoned, Sayoc said, he has heard voices and suffered various psychological effects, including depression, high anxiety, vertigo and loneliness.

Explaining his crimes, he said he was never political until he was looking at Facebook on his phone one day when "Donald J. Trump popped up ..."

He likened attending a Trump rally to a newfound drug.

"I was getting so wrapped up in this new found fun drug," he said in one handwritten letter.

Now, though, he says he has sworn off politics.

"Politics is dirty, ruthless, deadly," he wrote. "It is a poison. It will drive you crazy like it or not."

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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