Published June 21, 2010
NEW YORK – A Pakistan-born U.S. citizen has briefly appeared in federal court on an indictment accusing him of plotting a failed Times Square car bombing.
Faisal Shahzad was told by a judge that his hearing is being postponed until later Monday afternoon.
Shahzad is scheduled to enter a plea to 10 terrorism and weapons charges. He's accused in a plot that fizzled when a gasoline-and-propane bomb failed to ignite in an SUV parked near a Broadway theater May 1.
The Bridgeport, Conn., resident was arrested two days later. Authorities say he cooperated with investigators for two weeks before requesting a lawyer.
The 30-year-old Shahzad can face life in prison if convicted.
Shahzad, who was arrested May 3 on a Dubai-bound plane at Kennedy International Airport, tried to detonate a homemade gasoline-and-propane bomb inside a used SUV among thousands of tourists. 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 statement. "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."
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 $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."
The Associated Press contributed to this report