Tags: nypd | pipe bomb | john miller | commissioner of intelligence and counterterrorism

NYPD: Pipe Bomber Suspect Not on Anyone's 'Radar'

By    |   Tuesday, 12 December 2017 10:49 AM

A New York City cab driver accused of setting off a homemade pipe bomb early Monday morning in an underground tunnel near Times Square was not on anyone's radar before the attack, New York Police Department Commissioner of Intelligence and Counterterrorism John Miller said Tuesday.

“This is an individual who came from Bangladesh, was living here, went through a number of jobs, was not particularly struggling financially or under any known pressure, who was not on our radar at the NYPD and not on the FBI radar," Miller told the "CBS This Morning" program.

Miller said the suspect, Akayed Ullah, 27, is like many others that have been seen around the world, and turned up "one day out of the blue."

Just before 7:30 a.m. Monday, Ullah while walking through the underground tunnel linking the Times Square subway station to the Port Authority bus terminal in Manhattan, set off a homemade pipe bomb that was strapped to him through the use of Velcro and zip-ties. A handful of other commuters received minor injuries, while Ullah ended up hurting only himself seriously.

Ullah told investigators he chose that location because of its Christmas-themed posters, and that he set off the bomb to retaliate for airstrikes the United States launched on ISIS targets in Syria and other locations.

He came to the United States from Bangladesh in 2011 on a family immigrant visa and is a legal resident, according to Department of Homeland Security spokesman Tyler Houlton, sparking complaints from the Trump administration about the "chain migration" system that allows family members of people already in the United States to enter the country.

The suspect, who was taken into custody and put in Bellevue Hospital for treatment for his injuries, lives in Brooklyn with his mother and sister, and even though he worked as a cab driver, he had a background as an electrician, and told police he had been inspired by ISIS, but was not taking orders from the Islamist terror group.

This kind of lone-wolf terrorist is difficult to track and identify before an attack occurs, said Miller.

"This is not the Al Qaida model where a cell of people who are communicating with a base are an intelligence problem," said Miller. Instead, such attackers "are consumers of this propaganda and these plots unfold when they’re not necessarily working with anyone else."

ISIS and other terror groups seize on the fact that lone-wolf actors have a "conspiracy within the confines of their own mind," he added.

Meanwhile, the attack could have been much worse, said Miller, except the bomb "didn’t function with the force and power that the recipe intended it to. I think what we saw yesterday was something that could have been far, far worse.”

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A New York City cab driver accused of setting off a homemade pipe bomb early Monday morning was not on anyone's radar before the attack, New York Police Department Commissioner of Intelligence and Counterterrorism John Miller said Tuesday.
nypd, pipe bomb, john miller, commissioner of intelligence and counterterrorism
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2017-49-12
Tuesday, 12 December 2017 10:49 AM
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