Pleasanton Weekly

News - November 18, 2011

Pleasanton bomber's trail leads to Massachusetts

Tip called in after TV show feature

by Glenn Wohltmann

A reenactment on America's Most Wanted has led the FBI to New England in its search for the man wanted in a 2003 bombing at Shaklee Corp. headquarters on Willow Road.

The FBI is asking the public's help in locating Daniel Andreas San Diego, a fugitive on the FBI's Most Wanted Terrorist list who may be hiding in western Massachusetts. A tip from "America's Most Wanted" has led the FBI to conclude that San Diego may be in the Northampton, Mass., area. FBI Special Agent Richard DesLauriers called the tip "recent and current."

San Diego was the first domestic suspect added to the FBI's Most Wanted Terrorist list on April 21, 2009. He's wanted for his alleged involvement in two bombings in the Bay Area, including a Sept. 26, 2003, bomb laden with nails that was exploded at Shaklee. The FBI is offering a $250,000 reward for his capture.

The Shaklee bombing was the second site believed to have been targeted by San Diego. Two bombs exploded approximately one hour apart on the campus of Chiron, a biotech corporation in Emeryville, on Aug. 28, 2003.

A federal arrest warrant was issued for San Diego in October 2003, but he disappeared before he could be taken into custody.

San Diego, a former Berkeley resident and son of the Belvedere city manager, is described as a 6-foot-tall white male with brown hair and brown eyes, weighing 160 pounds. He has several tattoos, including a round image of burning hillsides in the center of his chest with the words "It only takes a spark" printed in a semicircle below; and burning and collapsing buildings on the sides of his abdomen and back.

He's been linked to an extremist animal rights organization and was a dedicated vegan, eating neither meat nor any food containing animal products.

The bombing created a stir in Pleasanton, when the Police Department responded to the first of five calls dispatchers received on their emergency 911 telephone lines between 3:20 and 3:30 a.m. from residents who reported a loud explosion in the area. A minute earlier, a dispatcher at the Livermore-Pleasanton Fire Department received an automated alert from Shaklee's fire alarm system of an emergency at the southeast corner of the building, near a doorway. Both police and firefighters were at the scene within minutes.

Bomb-sniffing dogs from Pleasanton and the state police force were also brought in, with a determination made that the device that exploded was the only one in the area. Investigators said a kitchen timer wired to the device had triggered the explosive material.

The FBI says San Diego should be considered armed and dangerous.

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