San Jose transformer bombing (source: San Jose Police Department)

Engineer accused of bombing two PG&E transformers in California

USA, San Jose: An engineer faces charges that he bombed two electrical transformers, cutting power to 1,500 customers in California, federal officials reported.

Peter Karasev, 36, of San Jose is accused of planting bombs at Pacific Gas & Electric Co. transformers in the city in December 2022 and January 2023, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of California said in a Thursday, Nov. 9, news release. The explosions cut power to a total of 1,500 homes and businesses in San Jose, prosecutors said.

Investigators also found various improvised bombs and 300 pounds of bomb-making materials in his house, officials said. However, the motive for the attacks hasn’t been revealed. “These charges make clear that those who attack our country’s critical infrastructure will be met with the full force of the Justice Department,” Attorney General Merrick B. Garland said in the release.

“Damaging our region’s critical infrastructure endangers innocent victims, including our most vulnerable citizens such as the elderly and the sick, and we will not tolerate it,” U.S. Attorney Ismail J. Ramsey said in the release. Karasev was arrested in March, and the case was later transferred to federal authorities. A federal grand jury indicted him on charges of destroying energy facilities and using fire or explosives to commit a federal crime, prosecutors said. If convicted, he faces up to 20 years in prison, a $250,000 fine and three years of supervised release on each charge, officials said.

Source: The Sacramento Bee