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FBI urges Capitol rioters to surrender as hundreds face charges

FBI urges Capitol rioters to surrender as hundreds face charges
The FBI could charge hundreds of people over the Capitol riots, as investigators sift through more than 100,000 pieces of digital evidence.
Steven D'Antuono, the assistant director in charge of the FBI's Washington DC office, said 70 people have so far been charged over the riots, with federal agents opening more than 160 case files.
But Mr D'Antuono warned that the FBI had only hit the "tip of the iceberg" and potentially hundreds of people would be charged for storming the Capitol.
A Capitol police officer looks out of a broken window as protesters gather on the US Capitol Building (Getty)
The FBI called on rioters to hand themselves in, even if they had escaped Washington DC in the aftermath of last week's rampage.
"Even if you left DC, agents from our local field offices will be knocking on your door," Mr D'Antuono said.
Michael Sherwin, the acting US Attorney for District of Washington, said two pipe bombs found near the Republican National Committee and Democratic National Committee on 6 January "were real devices" with explosive igniters and timers.
"We don't know exactly why they did not go off, that's being investigated," he said.
"What was the purpose of those devices being planted? Was it a diversionary type of a tactic used by some of these rioters?
"Or did it have some other type of nefarious purpose?"
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Mr Sherwin said multiple US law enforcement agencies were trying to find out the answers to those questions.
Some rioters would face serious sedition and conspiracy felony charges, carrying prison terms of up to 20 years , Mr Sherwin said.
Last week hundreds of protesters stormed the US Capitol, after they were whipped into a frenzy at an event where outgoing President Donald Trump spoke, often in an incendiary tone.
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As protesters smashed their way inside the Capitol, some were heard calling for vice president Mike Pence to be executed and hung from a tree on Capitol hill.
Another protester was photographed carrying plastic zip-ties, prompting a theory some were ready to detain political hostages.
US Capitol Police detain protesters outside of the House Chamber, during a riot which shocked the world. (Getty)
A protester spotted inside the Senate chamber carrying plastic zip-tie handcuffs has prompted theories some in the Capitol riot wanted to catch and detain hostages. (Getty)
Lawmakers inside the building were forced to evacuate, and a police officer was one of five people killed.
Meanwhile, a seemingly unrepentant Mr Trump was south of Washington DC today, speaking near the US-Mexico border
"Free speech is under assault like never before," he said, referring to his de-platforming by big tech.
"The 25th amendment is of zero risk to me but will come back to haunt Joe Biden and the Biden administration."
He said that "the impeachment hoax is a continuation of the greatest witch hunt in history".