US Police Arrest Terror Suspect With Bomb Strapped To Body In New York

Police take down Akayed Ullah in New York in a photo widely shared on social media, Dec. 11, 2017. (Obtained by ABC News)

LAGOS DECEMBER 12TH (NEWSRANGERS)-A man accused of detonating an explosive in the New York City subway system this morning had the bomb strapped to him while he rode in from Brooklyn to Manhattan before the attack, a law enforcement source said.
The explosion occurred in an underground passageway near the Port Authority Bus Terminal, sending commuters scrambling to evacuate a major transit hub just blocks from Times Square. Despite the rush-hour crowds, only five people suffered minor injuries, officials said.
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo called the underground explosion “one of our worst nightmares.” New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio called it an “attempted terrorist attack.”
Authorities called the homemade device an “improvised low-tech explosive” that was attached to the suspect with hook-and-loop fasteners and zip ties.
A law enforcement source said the bomb was built from a 12-inch-long pipe, black powder and rigged with a 9-volt battery and a wire that came from a Christmas light. Because it was strapped to the suspect, the assumption is he had been prepared to die a suicide bomber, the source said. The pipe had nails stuffed into it, the source said, and it had the ability to impose more injuries than it did.
“This could have been worse,” a law enforcement source told ABC News.
However, the pipe did not fully shatter and a 6-inch piece was discovered fully intact.
The 27-year-old suspect, Akayed Ullah, is in the hospital, badly injured in the arm and torso from the device that went off in his arms, sources said. Ullah, originally from Bangladesh, told authorities he is self-inspired from ISIS online propaganda, sources said. Ullah told authorities no one directed him to carry out the attack and he talked about the plight of Muslims over the years, a law enforcement source said.
Ullah entered the United States from Bangladesh seven years ago on a family-based visa and has an address in Brooklyn, sources said. The explosive was assembled in his apartment, sources said.
Video of the incident, shot by a surveillance camera, shows commuters walking in the passageway when the explosion erupts. The camera screen filled with smoke as people scattered.
Christina Bethea, 29, told ABC News she was in the passageway on her way to work next to the terminal when she heard a bang, saw smoke and ran.
“If I didn’t believe in God, I believe in God today,” she said, adding that she commuted from Yonkers, New York.
Alfonso Chavez — brother of Veronica Chavez, who was hospitalized after today’s attack — told ABC News that his sister is doing better but still feeling the after-effects of the explosion. Veronica Chavez was on her way to work when the bomb detonated. She told her brother that she first heard the explosion and then saw dust and smoke.
When the smoke settled, she saw two to three bodies on the floor along with some debris, her brother said she told him. She froze for a second, then ran, falling to the ground as she went before finally reaching an exit, Alfonso Chavez said.
Source: Goodmorning America

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