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Published: Sat, December 16, 2017
Global Media | By Abel Hampton

NY blast suspect's wife, in-laws arrested in Dhaka

NY blast suspect's wife, in-laws arrested in Dhaka

POLICE in Bangladesh scrambled on Tuesday (12) for details about alleged NY subway bomber Akayed Ullah, but uncovered few early leads that might shed light on what might have driven him to try and kill commuters with a homemade bomb. Authorities on Monday investigated two Brooklyn residences with connections to Ullah. Ullah told authorities he carried out the attack in part because of the US government's policies in the Middle East.

He also told investigators he had been motivated by American air strikes on IS target, the document says.

NY governor Andrew Cuomo said the bomb used was an "effectively low-tech" device. When Ullah returned to the United States, his wife remained in Dhaka with their baby and her parents.

"That justice will be tough, it will be fair, and it will be swift", Kim said.

Akayed Ullah, 27, was charged in a criminal complaint filed in Manhattan federal court with providing material support to a foreign terrorist organisation, bombing a public place, destruction of property by means of explosive and use of a destructive device.

The suspect was in hospital in a serious condition with burn injuries on his hands and abdomen and lacerations after being detained.

Three others were hurt, but none of the injuries are considered life-threatening, the FDNY said.

Earlier, local news channel WABC cited police sources as saying a possible pipe bomb detonated in a passageway below ground at Port Authority. Nobody knew that for almost an hour, Ullah was allegedly on the train with a crudely made pipe bomb strapped to his chest with Velcro and zip ties. "He intentionally detonated that device". The suspect "was an individual who flew below the radar, did not give us any indication, and he committed this act", NYPD Chief of Counterterrorism James Waters said. "And let's also be clear, this was an attempted terrorist attack". He began researching how to build improvised explosive devices about a year ago, began collecting the necessary items two to three weeks ago and built the bomb in his home a week ago, the complaint states.

Ullah was admitted to the United States in 2011 under the fourth family preference for immigrant visas, which is for brothers and sisters of US citizens and their spouses and children.

His wife, who remained in Bangladesh when he moved Brooklyn, said he "never mentioned radicalization or planning these types of activities", Bangladeshi police spokeswoman Sahely Ferdous said.

She said Ullah last traveled to Dhaka in September. Surveillance footage shows the attacker walking among the rush-hour crowd, and then smoke filling the area as the device goes off. A teenage relative was pulled out of class and questioned in school without a parent, guardian or lawyer, the statement said.

Commuters exit a train as police officers stand in a closed-off underground walkway near the site of a pipe bomb explosion in the tunnel that connects the Times Square subway station to the Port Authority Bus Terminal, December 11, 2017 in New York City.

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