Republicans on the House Judiciary Committee are demanding an FBI briefing on the status of their January 6 Pipe Bomb Investigation following disclosures that the feds have enough information to identify a suspect.
In a letter to FBI Director Christopher Wray, Judiciary Committee Chairman Jim Jordan, Rep. Andy Biggs (R-Ariz.) and Rep. Bill Posey (R-Fla.) said the slow progression of the Bureau’s investigation into the pipe bombs “raises significant concerns about the FBI’s prioritization of that case in relation to other January 6 investigations.”
One former FBI assistant director observed, “[i]t just doesn’t add up . . . [t]here’s just too much to work with to not know who this guy is.” pic.twitter.com/ZVpwEkhS0r
— House Judiciary GOP (@JudiciaryGOP) May 24, 2023
Former FBI agent Kyle Seraphin, a whistleblower who worked on the pipe bomb investigation, told the Washington Times that after planting the bombs, the suspect used a MetroRail SmarTrip card to travel through the Washington metro system to a stop in northern Virginia.
“The FBI used security footage in the Northern Virginia to identify the license plate of the car that the individual entered,” the congressmen wrote. “Still, the FBI has not identified the subject.”
The suspect was caught on surveillance video. He wore a sweatshirt with the hood pulled up, a pair of Air Max Speed Turf shoes with a yellow Nike logo, a backpack and gloves. He was recorded walking through Capitol Hill neighborhoods carrying what federal investigators said were two live pipe bombs.
However, Mr. Seraphin said technicians determined the pipe bombs were inoperable.
His story runs counter to the FBI’s official version that the devices could have detonated at any time. The bureau repeated that story in January while offering a $500,000 reward for information leading to the suspect’s arrest.
Seraphin also told Times reporter Kerry Picket that a separate individual bought the Metrorail SmarTrip card one year before the pipe bomber suspect used it on Jan. 5, 2021.
“The card had never been used before. It was bought a year prior by a retired chief master sergeant in the Air Force, and he was a security contractor. So he held a security clearance,” Seraphin said.
Mr. Seraphin and his team surveilled the retired airman, who lived in a Northern Virginia townhouse, for a couple of days and learned about his background.
Although Mr. Seraphin, who also served in the Air Force, wanted to approach the Air Force veteran and talk to him, his bureau superiors forbade him to do so before his team was removed from the case.
“I don’t know what they [eventually] did on that case, but I know that it was BS and the bombs were BS, and it seems like they had a good lead, and they could have run it down. But as far as I know, they never did,” he told the Times. “He may still be occasionally surveilled. That’s how dumb it gets.”
The congressmen cited former FBI assistant director Christopher Swecker, who told Picket, “[i]t just doesn’t add up . . . [t]here’s just too much to work with to not know who this guy is.”
The committee requested an update on the case in a briefing no later that June 7, 2023.