FBI may have key link to suspect Original Unabomber manuscript is found in Kaczynski's cabin

April 13, 1996|By NEW YORK TIMES NEWS SERVICE

WASHINGTON -- Federal law enforcement officials said yesterday that agents searching Theodore J. Kaczynski's Montana cabin had found the original typewritten manuscript of the Unabomber's 35,000-word manifesto, a powerful piece of evidence that has convinced the authorities that they have the long-sought serial terrorist.

Elated officials said the recent discovery of the manuscript in the cabin capped a week-long search of the remote mountain cabin, in Lincoln, Mont., that has so far yielded a trove of physical evidence that prosecutors hope will provide them with an incontrovertible case against Mr. Kaczynski.

"If we lose this one," one law enforcement official said, "we'd better close up and go home."

The officials said the anti-technology manuscript left little room for doubt that Mr. Kaczynski was the Unabomber.

The officials said they believed that the manuscript found at the cabin was a master copy. From it, the Unabomber laboriously typed the copies of the manifesto that he sent to the New York Times and the Washington Post in June 1995, they said.

Moreover, the officials said that agents have found an original of a letter sent by the Unabomber to the New York Times last year. The bomber sent several letters to the newspaper over the years, and it was not clear which of his letters had been found at the cabin, although the letter appeared to relate to the Unabomber's demand that the newspapers publish his manifesto titled "Industrial Society and Its Future."

Near the manuscript in the loft of the tiny one-room cabin, agents also found a third manual typewriter. The first two typewriters found did not match the typewriting on the manuscripts sent to vTC the newspapers, and officials said yesterday that preliminary tests had confirmed that the type on the third machine matched the typewriting of the manuscripts.

The officials said agents also had found handwritten notations that might refer to some of the bomber's victims in a loose-leaf notebook found in Mr. Kaczynski's cabin. The notations mentioned geneticists, airlines and computer technology.

Some of the bomber's victims were drawn from those fields. A Unabomber device wounded Percy A. Wood in June 1980; he was then the president of United Airlines. Another bomb wounded 12 people when it exploded aboard an American Airlines 727 leaving Chicago in November 1979.

The officials said that the discovery of the manuscript in the cabin was a legally significant find in a search that has already yielded much physical evidence. The manuscript is the kind of powerful supporting evidence against Mr. Kaczynski that prosecutors want to use in what is emerging as an overwhelming circumstantial case against Mr. Kaczynski, a Harvard-educated mathematician who taught at the University of California at Berkeley.

The manuscript, a closely reasoned scholarly tract that railed at dehumanizing influences in postindustrial society, was mailed in June 1995 to the New York Times and the Washington Post. In September, the New York Times and the Washington Post jointly financed publication of the manifesto; later, it was reprinted and circulated on the country's computer networks.

Mr. Kaczynski has been charged only with the illegal possession of explosives, a charge not specifically tied to the Unabomber. Officials said they expected to accuse Mr. Kaczynski of Unabom crimes in several jurisdictions after evidence against him is presented to a grand jury.

On Thursday, Justice Department officials announced that Robert J. Cleary, an assistant U.S. attorney in Newark, N.J., would lead a six-member prosecution team. The probable top priorities for prosecution are the two most recent fatal bomb attacks, against Thomas Mosser, an advertising executive, who was killed at his home in North Caldwell, N.J., in December 1994, and against Gilbert Murray, a forestry association official who was killed in Sacramento, Calif., in April 1995.

In another development, the suspect's brother and mother, David Kaczynski and Wanda Dombek Kaczynski, visited the federal public defender's office here yesterday, people following the case said. The purpose of the visit was not clear, but it is likely that they might be assisting in some way in the defense of Mr. Kaczynski, who is being represented by a public defender in Montana.

Pub Date: 4/13/96

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