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Nancy Pelosi's husband leaves hospital - suspect in brutal attack had been in US illegally for 14 years

Sky News logo Sky News 03/11/2022 Samuel Osborne, news reporter

The husband of US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has been discharged from hospital after he was assaulted with a hammer - as it emerged the man charged with the brutal attack has been in the US illegally for 14 years.

Mr and Mrs Pelosi in Washington DC in December 2019 © Reuters Mr and Mrs Pelosi in Washington DC in December 2019

Paul Pelosi "remains under doctors' care as he continues to progress on a long recovery process and convalescence," Ms Pelosi said. She added: "He is now home."

The 82-year-old underwent surgeries for injuries suffered during the attack at the couple's house in San Francisco on Friday.

It came as immigration officials said the man charged with the attack, Paul DePape, is a Canadian citizen who has been in the US illegally after he entered as a visitor.

The US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agency said it had issued a "detainer" notice with San Francisco authorities seeking custody of the 42-year-old once criminal proceedings against him are completed.

Under the detainer, DePape would be turned over to ICE for possible deportation to Canada after serving any prison sentence he receives.

DePape wanted to 'break her kneecaps'

According to court papers released earlier this week, DePape told police he wanted to hold Ms Pelosi hostage and "break her kneecaps" if she "lied".

He is accused of breaking into the household and assaulting Mr Pelosi after confronting him as he slept in the couple's bedroom.

At some point he searched for the Democrat leader shouting: "Where is Nancy? Where is Nancy?"

The charges

The US Justice Department has charged him with assault and attempted kidnapping, two counts carrying up to 50 years in prison.

DePape, who has been jailed without bond, pleaded not guilty to state charges of attempted murder, assault with a deadly weapon, burglary, elderly abuse, false imprisonment and threatening a public official. He could serve a maximum sentence of life in prison if convicted.

Paul Pelosi was violently attacked at the couple's home in San Francisco © Associated Press Paul Pelosi was violently attacked at the couple's home in San Francisco

Mr Pelosi underwent surgery for a skull fracture and injuries to his hands and right arm, his wife's office said. Doctors expect a full recovery.

Mrs Pelosi, the Democratic speaker of the US House of Representatives, and second-in-line to the presidency, was in Washington DC at the time of the attack, having recently returned from a security summit in Europe.

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