During a press conference on Tuesday evening, the FBI announced that they expect “hundreds” of arrests relating to last week’s riot that turned into an attack on the United States Capitol and around 170 cases have already been filed.
Federal law enforcement officials revealed that pipe bombs found on the U.S. Capitol grounds last Wednesday, were equipped with explosive igniters, and are trying to locate the bomber, who appears in some surveillance footage taken outside the Capitol, is a top priority for the FBI.
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During a press conference at the Justice Department, acting U.S. Attorney Michael Sherwin said a team of specialists is also looking into possible charges of conspiracy.
“I think the scope and scale of this investigation and these cases are really unprecedented, not only in FBI history but probably in DOJ history,” Sherwin stated.
The agency plans to make the probe a “long-term investigation,” and one FBI official, Washington Field Office ADIC Steven D’Antuono told reporters that he wanted “to stress that the FBI has a long memory and a broad reach.”
Sherwin added that his office is planning to be involved with the FBI “for the long haul.” “This is going to be a long-term investigation,” he stated.
“They were real devices. They had explosive igniters. They had timers. We don’t know, obviously, exactly why they didn’t go off — that’s being investigated,” Sherwin said. “What was the purpose of those devices being planted? Was it a diversionary type of tactic used by some of these rioters? Or did it have some other type of nefarious purpose?”
“We’re looking at and treating this just like a significant international counterterrorism or counterintelligence operation. We’re looking at everything — money, travel records, looking at disposition, movement, communication records … if there was a command control, how it operated, and how they executed these activities,” Sherwin said, eschewing the term “domestic terrorism” because, he insisted, the Justice Department has plenty of tools to charge criminal conduct.
Sources: C-span, PBS, and Politico; Photo: whnt.com