DEVELOPING STORY: Pipe Bombs Reportedly Found In Pennsylvania Storage Unit Rented In Name Of Man Arrested In Ponzi Scheme Case

americaatrisk4DEVELOPING STORY: It is early and facts remain unclear. What’s known, according to local news reports, is that the FBI notified local police in the area of Chester County in southeastern Pennsylvania that agents would be operating in the region.

Late yesterday  — sometime after 11 p.m. while some residents were sleeping — explosions were heard in the area of Valley Creek Park. The explosions appear to have been controlled detonations by law enforcement, which earlier had found dozens of pipe bombs in a storage unit near the town of Malvern. Members of bomb squads were seen in the area.

The storage unit was rented in the name of Istvan Merchenthaler, an accused Ponzi schemer.

From Malvern Patch (italics added):

Around 8:30 p.m., bomb squads from Montgomery County and Philadelphia began hauling the explosives from the storage facility to nearby Valley Creek Park. The explosives were transported inside large metal containers on trailers, and each trip involved a convoy of fire engines, ambulances and police vehicles.

From Chester County Daily Local News (italics added):

The source, who asked to remain anonymous due to the ongoing and sensitive nature of the investigation, said that the storage locker was registered to 42-year-old Istvan [Merchenthaler], a Chester County man facing federal charges in connection to a Ponzi scheme that officials say defrauded investors of about $2 million over the past seven years.

Officials close to [Merchenthaler]’s case said the suspect was connected to similar explosive investigations in other states, and added that he is facing charges in multiple jurisdictions throughout the east coast.

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