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FBI: US Pipe Bomb Suspect Confesses

By Digital Journal Staff     May 9, 2002 in Technology
RENO (voa) - Confessed pipe bomber Luke Helder has been ordered held without bail during his first court appearance in Reno, Nevada.
The 21-year-old university student is expected to be transferred to Iowa, one of several Midwestern states where he faces charges of planting pipe bombs that injured six people.
Earlier Wednesday, the FBI said the Minnesota native confessed to planting the pipe bombs in rural mailboxes.
The FBI affidavit said Mr. Helder described the areas where he placed the crude explosive devices in Illinois, Iowa, Nebraska, Colorado and Texas. A total of 18 of the devices were discovered in mailboxes over a five-day period that began late last week.
Federal prosecutors in Iowa have already filed criminal charges against Mr. Helder in connection with a bomb explosion that injured a woman there on Friday. Threatening anti-government letters accompanied all of the pipe bombs.
Prior to being identified as the chief suspect, the university student was stopped by police three times during his crime spree, twice for speeding and once for not wearing his seatbelt, but was let go each time. The crime spree sparked new fears of "domestic terrorism" in the United States, following last year's anthrax mail attacks.
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