Times Square Bomb, Suspect Faisal Shahzad Charged

Suspect Faisal Shahzad is being charged today with five counts for the car bomb that was found parked in Times Square on Saturday, May 1.

The smoking Nissan Pathfinder that was parked in Times Square turned out to be a car bomb made from gasoline, propane, firecrackers and alarm clocks. The suspect that is believed to be the one who devised this failed car bomb is Faisal Shahzad, a 30-year-old immigrant who became a naturalized U.S. citizen last year and was a current resident of Shelton, Connecticut. Shahzad admitted his role in the plot and told investigators he had received training in bomb-making in Waziristan, a Taliban and al-Qaida stronghold.

Shahzad is believed to have bought the 1993 Nissan Pathfinder that was used in the bomb attempt from a Connecticut woman just a couple of weeks back, on April 24. He is said to have paid $1,300 cash for the vehicle via an ad on the internet. Sources say Shahzad was identified in a photo lineup by the seller of the vehicle.

Faisal Shahzad has been charged with attempting to use a weapon of mass destruction, attempting to kill or maim US citizens, carrying an improvised explosive device, transporting and receiving an explosive device and attempting to damage a building, vehicle or other property by fire or explosive. If convicted, Shahzad could get life in prison.

Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. said Tuesday that Shahzad “has provided useful information to authorities,” and U.S. officials said privately that the suspect was continuing to cooperate with investigators.

“After the arrest, Shahzad admitted that he had attempted to detonate a bomb in Times Square,” the FBI complaint says. “He also admitted that he had recently received bomb-making training in Waziristan, Pakistan.”

Shahzad was to make his first court appearance Tuesday, May 4, but that has been delayed until at least Thursday as he continued to be questioned by authorities.

“This incident is another sobering reminder of the times in which we live,” President Obama said Tuesday. “Around the world and here at home, there are those who would attack our citizens and who would slaughter innocent men, women and children in pursuit of their murderous agenda. They will stop at nothing to kill and disrupt our way of life.”

“It is clear that this was a terrorist plot,” Attorney General Eric Holder said Tuesday. It could have caused “death and destruction in the heart of New York City.”

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