Two ‘terrorising’ bombs have been sent to Barack Obama and the Clintons, the White House confirmed today.
The ‘functional explosive device’ found at the New York home of Bill and Hillary Clinton is thought to be linked to a similar package addressed to Obama which was intercepted by the Secret Service in Washington.
The White House condemned the attempted attacks as ‘despicable’, while the New York office of news channel CNN was also evacuated due to a package believed to have been a pipe bomb.
The attempted attacks came just days after another suspicious package was also addressed to billionaire philanthropist George Soros, on Monday.
The device was discovered early on Wednesday morning at the Clintons’ home in Chappaqua, New York.
Police in New Castle, New York – who cover Chappaqua – say they assisted the FBI, Secret Service and Westchester County authorities in ‘the investigation of a suspicious package’.
A US official said one of the packages had the return address of US representative Deborah Wasserman Schultz, the former chairwoman of the Democratic National Committee.
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The package addressed to Mr Obama was intercepted on Wednesday by Secret Service agents in Washington.
The Secret Service confirmed that neither Mrs Clinton or Mr Obama were at risk of receiving the packages.
The agency said: ‘The US Secret Service has intercepted two suspicious packages addressed to Secret Service protectees.
Here's the moment CNN had to handoff to DC and evacuate Time Warner Center in New York pic.twitter.com/TUtnWrss9z
— Josh Billinson (@jbillinson) October 24, 2018
‘Late on October 23, 2018, the Secret Service recovered a single package addressed to Former First Lady Hillary Clinton in Westchester County, New York.
‘Early this morning, October 24, 2018, a second package addressed to the residence of Former President Barack Obama was intercepted by Secret Service personnel in Washington, DC.
‘The packages were immediately identified during routine mail screening procedures as potential explosive devices and were appropriately handled as such. The protectees did not receive the packages nor were they at risk of receiving them.’
A criminal investigation has now been launched by the Secret Service to identify those responsible for sending the bombs.
Mrs Clinton was attending campaign events for Democrats in Florida on Tuesday and Wednesday and was not at the family’s New York residence at the time.
She is headlining a fundraising reception on Wednesday for former health and human services secretary Donna Shalala, who is running for Congress in South Florida.
Mr Clinton was at the family’s Chappaqua home at the time the package was intercepted at a Westchester County facility. The device was screened at the facility – not in proximity to their residence – and never reached the Clintons’ home.
A law enforcement official told the AP that the package discovered at Mr Soros’ home appeared to be a pipe bomb and was in a package placed in a post box outside the gates of the compound. An employee for Mr Soros opened it just inside the gates, not near Mr Soros’ quarters.
The Secret Service said media reports that it has intercepted a suspicious package bound for the White House are incorrect.