12/19/12, "Prosecutors: Fla. man planned NY terror bombing," AP via Miami Herald
"A Pakistani-born man wanted to avenge the deaths of U.S. drone
attacks in Afghanistan by blowing up a New York City landmark but lacked
the money and materials to carry out the plan, a federal prosecutor
Assistant U.S. Attorney Karen Gilbert said at a bail
hearing that Raees Alam Qazi, 20, researched bomb-making techniques on
Internet sites affiliated with al-Qaida, including one using Christmas
tree lights, and the FBI recorded phone calls and conversations linking
Qazi to a purported "lone wolf" plot.
"He fully intended to do
this, and thankfully he didn't have enough money," Gilbert said.
Referring to casualties in U.S. drone attacks, she added: "He wants to
avenge those deaths and kill people."
Qazi traveled to New York last month in hopes of getting a job to
fund his terrorist plans, Gilbert said, but wound up sleeping in public
transportation, a mosque and in restaurants, and riding a bicycle around
the city looking for potential targets. He then decided to return home
on a Greyhound bus and was arrested after arriving back in South
Florida, she said.
Qazi, a naturalized U.S. citizen who attended local Florida public
schools, confirmed many elements of the plot in a statement to FBI
agents after his arrest in late November, Gilbert said. Investigators
also found bomb-making and related components at the Qazi family home in
Oakland Park, as well as explosives research evidence on a computer
used by Qazi.
Qazi is charged along with his brother, 30-year-old
taxi driver Sheheryar Alam Qazi, with conspiring to provide material
support to terrorists and with attempting to use a weapon of mass
destruction in the U.S. Both have pleaded not guilty to the charges,
which carry a potential life sentence if the men are convicted of both
U.S. Magistrate Judge William Matthewman ordered Raees
Qazi held without bail until trial, finding that he is a danger to the
community and a flight risk. His older brother has already agreed to
pretrial detention, but may seek bail later. A trial is likely many
Gilbert said Raees Qazi was the intended operative,
using either a suicide attack or a remote-control device to kill people
in a crowded place such as New York's Times Square, a Broadway theater
or perhaps on Wall Street. The elder Qazi supported his brother
financially and logistically with the knowledge that Raees was planning a
terror attack, the prosecutor said....
Raees Qazi's attorney, Daniel Ecarius, tried to persuade the judge to
allow his release on bail, noting that Qazi had made money by selling
bicycles on the Internet, had no criminal past and had already
relinquished his passport. Ecarius suggested Qazi could be released on
house arrest with electronic monitoring, but Gilbert urged the judge to
keep him locked up.
"He wanted to carry out an attack. If he is released from custody, he will," she said." via Atlas Shrugs