New York police report more suspicious powder incidents

NEW YORK Tue May 1, 2012 6:04pm EDT

1 of 4. Bank employees and investigators stand near bags containing clothes at a Wells Fargo bank branch that received suspicious envelopes containing white powder, in New York City April 30, 2012.

Credit: Reuters/Lee Celano

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NEW YORK (Reuters) - Three new envelopes containing suspicious white powder were sent to New York City banks and news organizations on Tuesday, along with notes suggesting the sender sympathizes with the Occupy Wall Street's Day of May 1 protests, police said.

A total of ten letter-sized envelopes were sent over the last two days, and at least some contained an identical note saying "This is a reminder that you are not in control" and "Happy May Day," police spokesman Paul Browne said.

In all ten cases, the substance turned out to be non toxic and in several cases the powder was identified as corn starch, Browne said.

The letters appeared intended to coordinate with a planned day of May 1 protests organized by the Occupy Wall Street movement and labor groups across the country.

"The messages indicated a link to today's May Day demonstrations," Browne said.

Five envelopes were sent to Wells Fargo, while one was sent to J.P. Morgan, and another to Citicorp. Rupert Murdoch's News Corp was also targeted, with one envelope addressed to the Wall Street Journal, police said.

Earlier, police had said a second envelope "possibly" had been sent to Fox News, also owned by News Corp and with offices in the same building as the Journal. But a Fox spokeswoman said later there was no envelope addressed to Fox.

Another letter, addressed to Mayor Michael Bloomberg, was processed at city offices at 100 Gold Street, and not at City Hall, police said.

Ed Needham, a member of Occupy Wall Street's New York media team, said late on Monday he had found no connection between the envelopes and his movement. "It doesn't sound like something that we would do," he said.

Since it was launched eight months ago, Occupy Wall Street has targeted U.S. financial policies it blames for the yawning income gap between rich and poor - between what they called the 1 percent of wealthiest Americans and the other 99 percent.

(Reporting by Edith Honan; Editing by Vicki Allen and Greg McCune)

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