Sunday, June 20, 2010

Times Square Car Bomb Suspect Indicted in NY

Via -

Times Square bomb suspect Faisal Shahzad was charged Thursday with 10 terrorism and weapons counts in an indictment that accuses him of receiving explosives training and financial help from the Pakistani Taliban.

The indictment returned by a grand jury in U.S. District Court in Manhattan added five charges to the original case against the 30-year-old Shahzad and also detailed in greater depth his alleged financing, saying Shahzad had received a total of $12,000 from the militant group through cash drop-offs in Massachusetts and Long Island.

Shahzad is accused of plotting to build and detonate a homemade gasoline-and-propane bomb inside a used SUV among thousands of tourists on a busy Saturday night. He was charged with attempted use of a weapon of mass destruction among several terrorism and weapons counts.

"The facts alleged in this indictment show that the Pakistani Taliban facilitated Faisal Shahzad's attempted attack on American soil," Attorney General Eric Holder said in a release. "Our nation averted serious loss of life in this attempted bombing, but it is a reminder that we face an evolving threat that we must continue to fight with every tool available to the government."

Shahzad's lawyers did not immediately respond to requests for comment on the indictment. Shahzad was scheduled to enter a plea during an appearance in court Monday. The most serious counts against him carry mandatory penalties of life in prison.

The indictment alleged that Shahzad received explosives training in Waziristan, Pakistan, in December 2009 from trainers affiliated with Tehrik-e-Taliban, a Pakistan-based militant extremist group. The affiliation with the group led to financing as well, the indictment alleged.

It said Shahzad received approximately $5,000 in cash in Massachusetts on Feb. 25 from a co-conspirator in Pakistan whom Shahzad understood worked for Tehrik-e-Taliban.

Approximately six weeks later, on April 10, 2010, Shahzad received an $7,000 more in cash in Ronkonkoma, N.Y., which also was sent at the co-conspirator's direction, the indictment said.

U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara said Shahzad conspired with the Pakistani Taliban "to wreak death and destruction in Times Square."

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