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Kaczynski arraigned by video in New Jersey bombing

kaczynski.arraign December 10, 1996
Web posted at: 5:45 p.m. EST

NEWARK, New Jersey (CNN) -- Unabomb suspect Theodore Kaczynski, appearing at his Newark arraignment via video from Sacramento, California, pleaded not guilty Tuesday to charges that he killed advertising executive Thomas Mosser in December 1994.

Kaczynski's plea was made through a live hookup to the federal courthouse in Newark, where Judge Dickinson R. Debevoise presided in a courtroom packed with spectators, journalists and court workers. Among those present was Mosser's widow, Susan.

In Sacramento, where Kaczynski has been jailed since early summer, U.S. marshals moved Kaczynski to the federal public defender's office for the cross-country arraignment.

Kaczynski is accused of killing Mosser by sending a mail bomb to his New Jersey home. It is the only attack for which the suspect known as the Unabomber claimed responsibility.

Kaczynski, 54, a former Berkeley mathematics professor who became a recluse, was arrested last April at his mountain cabin in Montana.

The arrest ended a 17-year manhunt for a suspect in a string of bombings the FBI investigated as part of an operation it code-named UNABOMB. The Unabomber's early targets were universities and airlines.

Although the results of the Unabomber's attacks occurred in different parts of the country, a three-count indictment issued in October charged that all of them originated in California, and that Kaczynski had mailed the explosive device to Mosser from San Francisco.

Mosser, 50, was killed when he opened a package containing a bomb on December 10, 1994, in his northern New Jersey home. The bomb, packed in a wooden box, was delivered to the Mosser home December 9. Mosser opened it the following day as he was sitting at a kitchen table, and it went off, killing him instantly.

Kaczynski pleaded not guilty in June to charges that he was behind four bombings that killed computer store owner Hugh Scrutton in 1985 and timber industry executive Gilbert Murray in 1995, and wounded University of California scientist Charles Epstein and Yale computer expert David Gelertner in 1993.

Those bombs either exploded in or were mailed from Sacramento.

Prosecutors said they hope to decide before January whether to seek the death penalty in the Mosser case. Kaczynski also could face that fate for the two Sacramento bombing deaths.

It had been expected that he would stand trial first in the California case. But federal prosecutors say they are prepared to begin the trial in Newark as early as next June. Kaczynski's lawyers have asked for one trial combining the charges. The judge has not ruled on the defense request, nor has he set a trial date.

Kaczynski also is charged with mail-bomb attacks in Utah, Tennessee and Michigan in the 1980s that injured four people.


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