Bangladeshi aiming to 'destroy America' nabbed
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A 21-year old Bangladeshi man, who came to the US aiming to "destroy America", has pleaded guilty to attempting to carry out a terrorist attack for the al-Qaeda at the Federal Reserve Bank here using a 1,000-pound bomb.
Quazi Mohammad Rezwanul Ahsan Nafis, entered his guilty plea to the charge of attempting to use a weapon of mass destruction at the US District Court for the Eastern District of New York yesterday.
"The charge to which Nafis pleaded guilty, attempting to use a weapon of mass destruction, carries a sentence of up to life imprisonment," federal prosecutor Loretta Lynch said in a statement.
Nafis would be sentenced on May 30 at a federal courthouse in Brooklyn.
According to Nafis's guilty plea, he had travelled to the US in January, 2012, "intending to fight violent jihad" and tried to recruit people to form a terrorist cell.
He also sought other al-Qaeda contacts within the US to help him carry out terror attacks against high-ranking US officials and the New York Stock Exchange, the plea said.
In his possession were bomb-making instructions and speeches by now dead al-Qaeda leader Anwar al-Awlaki.
In a written statement, Nafis said he wanted to "destroy America" and chose to target the Federal Reserve Bank in Manhattan's financial district in an attack planned for October last year on behalf of al-Qaeda because he believed
the most efficient way to accomplish his goal was to target America's economy.
Nafis came into contact with an FBI undercover agent who posed as an al-Qaeda facilitator. At Nafis's request, the undercover agent supplied him with 20 fifty-pound bags of fake explosives, the FBI statement said.
Nafis met the undercover agent on the day of the planned attack and said he had a 'Plan B' that involved conducting a suicide bombing operation in the event that the attack was about to be thwarted by the police, the statement said.