The man arrested Friday on suspicion of mailing a dozen pipe bombs to President Trump's political enemies worked as a male stripper, his former employer told the Washington Examiner.
Ohio event promoter Tony Valentine said he hired Cesar Sayoc to strip on multiple occasions during the 1990s and that Sayoc, now 56, traveled the country for similar appearances.
[More: Bomb suspect Cesar Sayoc registered as Republican for 2016 election, has long criminal record]
"He really couldn't find his niche in life, and I guess he found it now," Valentine told the Washington Examiner. "Back in the '90s, he was running around from Minnesota to the Carolinas to Florida. He was like a gypsy."
Valentine, who vouched for Sayoc in a 2014 theft case, said Sayoc was "a big muscle head" who "wanted to be a professional wrestler — that was his dream."
Sayoc never discussed politics and wasn't known to abuse drugs, Valentine said.
"I would hire him to send him to do these shows. He would just go do a strip show and leave. He was a stripper," Valentine said. "He was dancing for a guy out in Oklahoma too."
Valentine said he would not employ Sayoc again "because he got old."
"He's like 900 years old now. I wouldn't hire a 50- or 60-year-old stripper," he said.
Valentine said that as of about five years ago, he heard that Sayoc was working as a female strip club manager and performing on the side at an all-male strip club in South Florida.
The all-male club did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
An unnamed cousin, however, told NBC News that Sayoc previously worked as an exotic dancer and strip club bouncer. His photo appears repeatedly on the Facebook page "Chippen Fellas."
Sayoc was arrested as authorities impounded a vehicle plastered with pro-Trump and anti-Democrat messages, appearing to indicate that Sayoc had strong political feelings.
But Daniel Lurvey, a defense attorney who represented Sayoc against theft charges in 2013 and 2014, said he cannot recall Sayoc ever discussing politics.
Although Sayoc had some Native American stickers on his vehicle, Lurvey said "I don't believe that he was, or is" Native American. Sayoc was born in New York, according to court records, which describe him as white with an olive complexion.
Lurvey said he met with Sayoc "lots and lots of time over a couple years," often at a Starbucks in Aventura, Fla., but could not confirm reports of professional stripping. He cited Sayoc's current physique as reason to doubt it.
"If you met him and had a cup of coffee with him, you would have thought -- this was going back about 5 years -- that he was a completely normal person," Lurvey said.