During a press conference Friday announcing the arrest of alleged mail bombing suspect Cesar Sayoc Jr., FBI Director Christopher Wray made it clear that the devices sent to Democratic figures, billionaire philanthropist George Soros, and prominent critics of President Donald Trump were “not hoax devices” — a comment that should put to rest a simmering right-wing theory about the bomber’s motivations.
Wrap said that the devices contained “energetic material” that could have potentially exploded if exposed to heat, shock, or friction. “Though we’re still analyzing these devices in our laboratory, these were not hoax devices.”
Wray’s remarks come in the wake of a number of high-profile figures on the right claiming that the devices were a “false flag” from the left intended to cast blame on the right, with some calling them an all-out hoax.
Those arguing the devices were a hoax included conservative pundits Dinesh D’Souza and Kurt Schlichter and Turning Point USA’s Candace Owens, who met with Trump at an event Friday for black conservatives.
Here’s my bet…
No one will be arrested for these alleged mail bombs.
After dozens of college campus hoaxes by leftists, I don’t buy this super convenient turn of events.
— Kurt Schlichter (@KurtSchlichter) October 24, 2018
Whether or not Wray’s comments will put the issue to rest isn’t clear yet.
Earlier on Friday, conservatives including radio host Rush Limbaugh were suggesting that the suspect’s van, which is covered in pro-Trump and anti-liberal memes, was part of a scam.
Other conservatives condemned those who argued that the bombings were a “leftist hoax,” with Tiana Lowe writing in the Washington Examiner:
While it’s obviously fine to withhold judgment on the attacks until law enforcement addresses more of the public’s questions, the rush from some on the Right to use a lack of facts to justify promulgating ridiculous conspiracy theories is both fallacious and irresponsible. Lies poison the well of truth, especially when the majority of Republicans in the White House and conservatives across the country have gone to such great lengths to condemn mob violence.