By Paulina Dedaj
Published April 23, 2019
The Florida man who pleaded guilty last month to mailing several faulty pipe bombs to prominent Democrats and critics of President Trump is blaming years of steroid use for the events leading up to his arrest.
In a letter to U.S. District Judge Jed S. Rakoff posted to the bomber's court case file Tuesday, 57-year-old Cesar Sayoc said he'd abused “heavy amounts of steroids” and used 274 different supplements and vitamins before he was arrested in late October. In all, he said he'd abused the steroids for over four decades.
Sayoc was attempting to appeal to the judge before his August sentencing where he could face up to life in prison.
He said he never intended to injure anyone when he mailed 16 makeshift bombs to CNN offices and numerous Democrats, including former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, former President Barack Obama, former Vice President Joe Biden, members of Congress and actor Robert De Niro.
The bombs started turning up over a five-day stretch weeks before the 2018 midterm elections.
Sayoc pleaded guilty in March to explosives-related charges but his lawyers were advocating for a more lenient sentence. They told the judge in a separate letter that a psychiatrist with specialized knowledge of the effects that steroids could have on mental health would compose a report on Sayoc's steroid use prior to the sentencing date.
Sayoc, who had been living in a van covered in Trump stickers before his arrest, previously said his goal was to “tone down the liberal left violence platform” which he thought his targets had been encouraging.
Since he was imprisoned he claimed to have heard voices and suffered various psychological effects, including depression, high anxiety, vertigo and loneliness.
Explaining his crimes, he said he was never political until he was looking at Facebook on his phone one day when "Donald J. Trump popped up ..."
"I was getting so wrapped up in this new found fun drug," he said of Trump rallies in one handwritten letter.
Now, though, he says he's sworn off politics, calling it "dirty, ruthless, deadly."
He continued, "It is a poison. It will drive you crazy like it or not."
The Associated Press contributed to this report.