Explosive devices were found in the mail of former US President Barack Obama and former US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, the Secret Service said Wednesday, according to the New York Times.
The Secret Service said in a statement it “has intercepted two suspicious packages addressed to Secret Service protectees” identified as Clinton and Obama, the Times reported.
According to the statement, the device addressed to Clinton was found in Westchester County by a Secret Service employee who screens her mail, while the device addressed to Obama was intercepted by Secret Service personnel in Washington DC early on Wednesday.
“The packages were immediately identified during routine mail screening procedures as potential explosive devices and were appropriately handled as such,” the statement said. “The protectees did not receive the packages nor were they at risk of receiving them.”
The statement said the agency had “initiated a full scope criminal investigation that will leverage all available federal, state, and local resources to determine the source of the packages and identify those responsible.”
Law enforcement officials told the New York Times that the devices were similar to one found at the home of billionaire George Soros on Monday.
The device at Soros' home, also in the suburbs of New York, was made out of a six-inch-long pipe filled with explosive powder, an official told the New York Times. It did not explode on its own, and bomb squad technicians “proactively detonated” it, he said.
The motive behind the bomb at Soros' house remained unclear, and no one has yet claimed responsibility, officials briefed on the investigation said, according to the Times.