Update: we now have the suspect’s name: Quazi Mohammad Rezwanul Ahsan Nafis, who in addition to Plan A had Plan B: “If Nafis felt his attack was about to be thwarted by cops, he would invoke the back-up plan, which involved a suicide bombing operation”
Quazi Mohammad Rezwanul Ahsan Nafis, 21, was arrested for allegedly attempting to detonate what he thought was a 1,000-pound bomb at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York in Manhattan, the Department of Justice and a U.S. attorney’s office said in a press release.* * *
We now have some more detail about the plot to blow up the reserve bank from a press release that breaks down the criminal complaint filed against Quazi Mohammad Rezwanul Ahsan Nafis:
The Bangladeshi national allegedly came to the United States in January to carry out a terror attack on U.S. soil and said he had overseas connections to al-Qaeda. As he attempted to recruit others to join his cell, he tried to recruit someone who turned out to be an FBI source, the criminal complaint says.
Nafis initially had a few targets in mind, according to the complaint, including “a high-ranking U.S. official and the New York Stock Exchange.” In the end, Nafis settled on the New York Federal Reserve Bank, federal officials said.
“In a written statement intended to claim responsibility for the terrorist bombing of the Federal Reserve Bank on behalf of al-Qaeda, Nafis wrote that he wanted to ‘destroy America’ and that he believed the most efficient way to accomplish this goal was to target America’s economy,” the Justice Department press release said. “In this statement, Nafis also included quotations from ‘our beloved Sheikh Osama bin Laden’ to justify the fact that Nafis expected that the attack would involve the killing of women and children.”
The “explosives that he allegedly sought and attempted to use had been rendered inoperable by law enforcement and posed no threat to the public,” according to a statement from U.S. Attorney Loretta E. Lynch.
The plot came to light as an FBI undercover agent posed as an al-Qaeda facilitator, federal authorities say.