NEW YORK — A Muslim man who is suspected in the planting of several bombs in New York City and New Jersey in September was indicted on Wednesday on eight federal counts and faces life in prison if convicted of the most serious charges.
Ahmad Khan Rahami, 28, is charged with charged with one count of using a weapon of mass destruction, one count of attempting to use a weapon of mass destruction, one count of bombing a public place, one count of destroying property by means of fire or explosive and one count of attempting to destroy property by means of fire or explosive.
He is also facing a charge of interstate transportation and receipt of explosives, as well as two counts of “using of a destructive device in furtherance of a crime of violence, namely, the use and attempted use of weapons of mass destruction.”
“Ahmad Khan Rahimi has been indicted in New York and separately charged in New Jersey for allegedly planting and detonating bombs that resulted in numerous injuries,” Acting Assistant Attorney General McCord said in a statement. “It was through world class investigative work that the defendant was identified and arrested before he could do any more harm. Pursuing those who seek to conduct attacks on our homeland will always remain the highest priority of the National Security Division.”
As previously reported, Rahami became a suspect in bomb attacks in New York and New Jersey after his fingerprints were found on explosive devices.
The first bomb believed to have been planted by Rahami exploded inside a trash can in Seaside Heights, New Jersey along the route of the Semper Five Marine Corps Charity 5K run.
Hours later, a pressure cooker bomb attached to a flip phone exploded in the Chelsea neighborhood of New York City, injuring 29. Another explosive device was located blocks away, which had failed to detonate.
The following day, five bombs were discovered inside of a trash can near the Amtrak station in Elizabeth, New Jersey. One of the bombs detonated as the FBI used a robot to disarm the devices, but no one was hurt.
Rahami was captured on Sept. 19 in a shootout with police after the owner of a local bar called 911 to advise that he found someone sleeping outside of his establishment.
“In the course of Rahimi’s arrest, a handwritten journal was recovered from Rahimi’s person,” the Department of Justice outlines. “Written in the journal were, among other things, mentions of explosive devices and laudatory references to Usama Bin Laden, the former leader of al Qaeda, Anwar al-Awlaki, a former senior leader of al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula and Nidal Hasan, who shot and killed 13 people in Foot Hood, Texas.”
Rahami is expected to appear in court on Thursday, where he will plead not guilty.