NEW YORK — New York arrested and charged a US Al-Qaeda sympathizer in a plot to build a pipe bomb to kill government workers, elected officials and others.
Mayor Michael Bloomberg said 27-year-old Jose Pimentel was targeting police, postal facilities and others and said he was a “lone wolf” without affiliation to foreign terrorist organizations.
City Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly said Pimentel, though not affiliated with an outside group, was a follower of slain radical cleric Anwar al-Awlaqi, who was killed in a US raid earlier this year.
“He talked about changing his name to Osama Hussein, to celebrate his heroes, Osama bin Laden and Saddam Hussein,” Kelly said.
Kelly said Pimentel, a native of the Dominican Republic who was a US citizen, had followed an online magazine from Awlaqi including an article “How to make a bomb in the kitchen of your mom.”
Pimentel “talked about killing US servicemen returning from Iraq and Afghanistan, particularly US army and Marine Corps personnel. He talked about bombing post offices in and around Washington Heights and police cars in New York City, as well as a police station in New Jersey,” the police chief said.
“We think what set him off was the elimination of Anwar al-Awlaqi,” Kelly said.
Awlaqi, suspected of involvement in several attacks on the United States and of recruiting Americans for his cause, was killed in an air strike in Yemen in late September.
Copyright © 2011 AFP. All rights reserved.
Photo by the Department of Defense Visual Information Center from Wikimedia Commons.