Bangladeshi pleads guilty in plot to bomb New York Fed
By Jessica Dye | February 8, 2013 5:14 AM EST
A Bangladeshi man pleaded guilty on Thursday to attempting to use a weapon of mass destruction in what authorities called a plot to blow up the New York Federal Reserve Bank. He faces up to life in prison under a plea agreement.
Quazi Mohammad Rezwanul Ahsan Nafis, 21, was arrested on October 17 after pulling up to the Federal Reserve near Wall Street and attempting to detonate what he believed to be a 1,000-pound (454-kg) bomb hidden in a van. Instead, he was carrying inert materials planted by an undercover FBI agent as part of a sting operation.
"I no longer support violent jihad. I deeply regret my involvement in this case," Nafis said at the hearing.
Nafis had also been charged with a count of attempting to provide material support to a U.S.-designated foreign terrorist organisation, al Qaeda. Nafis' lawyer said that charge would be dropped at sentencing under the plea agreement, which sets a sentencing range between 30 years and life.
Sentencing was set for May 30.
According to a criminal complaint unsealed in October, Nafis entered the United States in 2012 with a student visa, and eventually travelled to Queens, New York.
There, he scouted targets for a potential attack - including the New York Stock Exchange and U.S. President Barack Obama - settling eventually on the Federal Reserve Bank in Manhattan, the complaint said.
Nafis attempted to recruit others to his plot, and discussed his plans over social media sites such as Facebook, the complaint said. He claimed he was in contact with al Qaeda operatives overseas and actively sought out new al Qaeda connections in the United States, the complaint said.
One of the individuals he brought onboard was an undercover agent working for the FBI, who monitored Nafis' activities and helped arm him with the inoperable explosives, federal authorities said.
From Bangladesh, the suspect's father has denied his son was involved and said he was the victim of a "racist conspiracy."
(Reporting by Jessica Dye; Editing by Daniel Trotta and Tim Dobbyn)
Most Popular Slideshows
- In Photos, Typhoon Rammasun Blasts the Philippines
- Ellen DeGeneres Caught Cheating with Mutual Friend Before Portia de Rossi’s Rehab – Reports [PHOTOS]
- Flight MH17 Attack: Russians Claim 'Putin A Terrorist,' Memorial at Dutch Embassy Overflows [PHOTOS]
- Malaysia Airlines MH17: Vital Black Boxes Finally Land in Hands of Malaysian Authorities, Rebels Announce Ceasefire (PHOTOS/VIDEOS)
Join the Conversation
- Tourre on stand says email in SEC case 'not accurate'
- Syrian authorities blocking access to needy in Homs - Red Cross
- Faith in European Union at low ebb, EU poll says
- Former UBS banker gets 18 months, $1 million fine, for muni bid-rigging scheme
- U.S. judge halts challenges to Detroit's bankruptcy bid
- Google Nexus 8 Release Date Soon Along with 2 More HTC Android Tablets – Reports
- Windows Phone 8.1 Update Rollout: 20 Nokia Lumia Phones Eligible and 13 New Features to be Added
- Moto 360 Price Speculations, Key Features, Strategic Release Date, Design: A Watch That is More Than Just Time
- Sony PlayStation 4 Outsells a Resurgent Xbox One in June
- Killer Xiaomi Mi4 at $369 Likely to Come With 5.0-Inch Display, Snapdragon 801 Processor, 3GB RAM and More
- Three New Moto G Successors Spotted in FCC Document Dubbed Moto G2, Moto M and More --Reports
- NVIDIA Shield Gaming Tablet with Tegra K1 SoC Reported to be Released on July 29