Bomb suspect hit with terror charges
THE United States charged an Afghanborn US suspect on multiple terror counts in connection with bomb attacks in New York and New Jersey and other planted devices.
Prosecutors said Ahmad Khan Rahami, 28, carried out the September 17 bombings in Manhattan’s Chelsea neighbourhood and along the route of a US Marine Corps run in New Jersey, which aborted the race.
The 13-page indictment slapped him with four charges, including use of weapons of mass destruction, bombing a place of public use and destruction of property by means of fire or explosives.
A total of 31 people were wounded in the Chelsea attack, including a victim from Britain, a driver knocked unconscious and a woman who had ball bearings, metal and wood removed from her body, it said.
The bomb was a pressure cooker device packed with ball bearings and steel nuts, placed in a dumpster and detonated by a timed device – similar to a second bomb discovered four blocks away.
The indictment said five pipe bombs found in Rahami’s hometown of Elizabeth, and from the second device safely defused in Chelsea, were covered in the suspect’s fingerprints.
Surveillance footage also put him in Chelsea, and Rahami bought the ingredients for the bombs from eBay over the summer, prosecutors said.
He had a social media account under the name yaafghankid786, two jihadi videos and a handwritten journal that lauded Osama bin Laden.
A video recovered from the cellphone of a relative also showed Rahami igniting an incendiary device two days before the bombings near his home in Elizabeth.
Rahami was shot and captured on September 19 in Linden, New Jersey, just four hours after the FBI released his mugshot and sent an emergency cellphone alert to millions of people.
He has also been charged in New Jersey with unlawful weapon possession and five counts of attempted murder of a police official.
Rahami, who was operated on after sustaining multiple bullet wounds, is in “critical but stable” condition, police said. –