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Grand Jury Indicts Man Who Admitted to NYC Pipe Bomb Attempt

  • VOA News

This undated photo provided by the New York City Taxi and Limousine Commission shows Akayed Ullah, the suspect in the explosion near New York's Times Square, Dec. 11, 2017.

A U.S. grand jury has indicted 27-year-old Akayed Ullah of Brooklyn, New York, on six counts in connection with the attempted detonation of a pipe bomb in a Manhattan subway station Dec. 11, 2017.

The indictment charges Ullah with providing and attempting to provide material support to Islamic State, which has been designated a foreign terrorist organization by the U.S. government. It also includes one count of using a weapon of mass destruction; one count of bombing a place of public use; one count of destruction of property by fire or explosives; one count of conducting an attack against a mass transportation system; and one count of using a destructive device in a violent crime.

Ullah was found near the site of the blast with what appeared to police to be components of an exploded pipe bomb on his person, including a 9-volt battery, wires, plastic zip ties, pieces of a metal pipe, and what appeared to be a Christmas tree lightbulb. He was the only person seriously injured in the attempted attack near the New York Port Authority bus terminal.

FILE - Law enforcement officials work following an explosion near New York's Times Square, Dec. 11, 2017.
FILE - Law enforcement officials work following an explosion near New York's Times Square, Dec. 11, 2017.

Inspired by Islamic State

The indictment said he waived his Miranda rights, otherwise known as “the right to remain silent,” when questioned by police without a lawyer present.

During his interview with police, the indictment said, Ullah said he constructed the pipe bomb and carried out the attack on Dec. 11. He also said, “I did it for the Islamic State.”

Ullah said he was inspired by pro-Islamic State materials he found online. He followed the advice of a video saying if would-be jihadists couldn’t get overseas to join Islamic State, they should carry out attacks at home.

He said he carried out the attack partly because he was upset with U.S. policy toward the Middle East.

Ullah is expected to be brought before a judge Thursday to enter a plea.

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