May 6th, 2010
07:49 PM ET

Latest Updates: Times Square bomb plot

CBS says this exclusive photo shows Faisal Shahzad standing in the area near where he left the SUV that was packed with explosives.

[Updated at 7:44 p.m.]  Failed bombing suspect Faisal Shahzad brought more than $80,000 into the United States between 1999 and 2008, a federal law enforcement source told CNN Thursday.The official said that the Pakistani-American brought the money into the United States in approximately $20,000 increments over the course of several trips. He appears to have done so legally, having declared the money on his customs forms.

An administration official refused to confirm the amount of money but said, "It is not unusual for CBP [Customs and Border Protection] to see individuals with long-term travel to countries with informal, cash-based economies to self-declare large quantities of cash when entering or exiting the country."

The law enforcement source did not know if Shahzad brought money into the United States after his last trip to Pakistan early this year.

Authorities are investigating whether a group or individual might have financed his alleged attempted bombing of New York's Times Square last Saturday night.

[Updated at 7:29 p.m.]  Investigators believe that Times Square bombing suspect Faisal Shahzad had ties to TTP, a Pakistani Taliban group, a senior law enforcement official and a U.S. intelligence official said Thursday.

The law enforcement official said the extent of Shahzad's involvement with TTP has not been determined and could range from communications to training, and does not necessarily mean that TTP directed the attack.

TTP released a video making a claim of responsibility for the attack on a website established the day before the failed bombing attempt, but a spokesman for TTP has denied any connection with the 30-year-old Pakistani-American.

A U.S. official said earlier in the day that connections to TTP were "plausible," but noted that numerous connections among insurgent groups in Pakistan made it difficult to zero in on a single responsible group.

[Updated at 4:13 p.m.] New leads developed from the Pakistani end of the investigation into the failed Times Square bombing show Faisal Shahzad likely had training in Pakistan from extremists, according to a senior U.S. official.

The official has direct knowledge of discussions between senior U.S. and Pakistani officials about the case.

"Did he receive help in Pakistan? Yes he did," said the official. The official said the belief is that Shahzad received training of some sort but would not say if the training was specific to attempting the Times Square bombing.

The official and another U.S. official said investigators have not concluded from which group Shahzad may have received help.

Investigators continue to look into the connection Shahzad may have had with TTP, a Pakistani Taliban group that initially claimed responsibility for the attempted attack but then denied it in a statement to CNN.

[Updated at 12:01 p.m.] CNN has obtained an exclusive CBS News photo that shows Faisal Shahzad, the accused Times Square bomber, in Times Square with his friends.

The photo shows Shahzad less than 100 yards from the area where he parked his SUV that was packed with explosives, CBS said.

"The photo shows Faisal Shahzad standing on the far right with his wife, Huma Mian, and several other unidentified people," CBS reported. "Sources tell CBS News the photo is believed to have been taken a year and a half to two years ago."

[Updated at 10:43 a.m.] Four men suspected of having links to the banned militant group Jaish e Mohammed are being interrogated in connection with the failed bombing attempt in New York, a Pakistani intelligence official told CNN Thursday.

A joint high-level U.S.-Pakistani investigation team was questioning the people. The source asked not to be named because he is not authorized to speak to the media.

[Updated at 10:36 a.m.] A law enforcement source tells CNN says no decision has been made yet on whether to release a new tape of accused terrorist Faisal Shahzad. The tape shows him in the Shubert Alley. He’s wearing a white baseball cap. The source says the image seems to have been taken around the time that witnesses were starting to notice the Pathfinder was smoking.

[Updated at 10:29 a.m.] A former neighbor of the Times Square bombing suspect said authorities confiscated from her family a hard drive of a computer once owned by him.

Brenda Thurman told CNN on Thursday that federal law enforcement officials took the hard drive on Tuesday and questioned her about what type of person Faisal Shahzad was and how Shahzad felt about the government and his religion.

She said Shahzad and his wife gave the computer to Thurman's daughter last June as they were parting with possessions from their home in Shelton.

The couple told her they were giving the desktop away, she said, because they had laptops and didn't need the desktop anymore. She said the computer was never used or hooked up after her family got it.

In an earlier CNN interview, she explained that Shahzad, his wife, two children and his wife's two sisters lived next to her in Shelton for about three years, moving out in July 2009.

[Updated at 10:20 a.m.] A Pakistani intelligence official tells CNN that a joint U.S-Pakistani investigation team have questioned the father of Faisal Shahzad, Bahar Ul Haq, today in Peshawar, Northwest Pakistan.

The official says the father has not been detained or arrested, but was only questioned about his son’s alleged involvement in the failed bombing attempt in New York. The official asked not to be named because he is not authorized to speak to the media.

[Updated at 8:43 a.m.] Law enforcement contacted a handful of airlines to alert them that Faisal Shahzad's name had been added to a government no-fly list, but Emirates, the airline the Times Square car bomb suspect boarded late Monday, wasn't one of them, an administration official confirmed.

For reasons related to the investigation, the FBI asked the Transportation Security Administration not to call every airline to alert them about the no-fly list change, the source said Wednesday.

Even though air carriers are automatically informed about additions to the no-fly list, law enforcement authorities will also alert airlines to be on the lookout for a new name on the list.

Shahzad was added to the no-fly list 12:30 p.m. ET Monday and nine minutes later an automated message went out to air carriers advising them of a special add to the list.

Shahzad's name was not caught by Emirates at 6:30 p.m. when he made his reservation while driving to the airport or at 7:35 p.m. when he showed up at the counter and bought his ticket with cash because the airline had not yet updated its no-fly list.

[Updated at 7:47 a.m.] The ranking Republican on the House intelligence committee says "there probably is a strong link" between Times Square car bombing suspect Faisal Shahzad and the Taliban in Pakistan.

U.S. Rep. Peter Hoekstra told CNN's American Morning Thursday he has drawn that conclusion from a number of sources.

"If this is accurate," Hoekstra said, "it would be a game-changer."

"We're going to get much more aggressive and perhaps more creative in terms of how we gather intelligence to find the plots and find individuals to stop them."

He said his committee, the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence,  will be getting an official briefing later on Thursday.

Read Wednesday's full updates

soundoff (18 Responses)
  1. Professor

    I think there should be a closer examination of why Emirates allowed Shahzad on the flight. There are many sympathizers if not accomplices in Arab world and since Emirate is an Arab airline (belonging to UAE), this situation has to be looked at from that angle first. I am a moslem and I hate to see moslems let down their values and get involved in such act of blind terrorism directed at innocent people. Our prophet Mohammad (PBUH) was so kind and modest even with his enemies, how can we call ourselves his followers and still do such abhorrent acts.

    May 6, 2010 at 9:32 am | Report abuse |
  2. sanket patel

    I think people from pakistan must not allowed in US. They are the ones invented terrorism. Look at the history and you will find out. The FBI did great job and no wonder they are #1 when it comes to intel. People shoudn't be worry if this guy would have left to UAE or Pakistan because FBI would have grab him (from overseas) from the neck and bring him to justice. He shouldnt get life sentence. Its only one, DEATH SENTENCE.

    May 6, 2010 at 11:26 am | Report abuse |
  3. rivirivi

    The GOOD HUMANS who happen to believe Islam should come out from everywhere condemning the acts of their fellows who wrongly believe lies like Allah would be happy and wants them to hurt, harm, kill, hate, instill fear and unhappiness to OTHER HUMANS ALLAH ALSO MADE.

    May 6, 2010 at 11:49 am | Report abuse |
  4. dcviper23

    I think its sad that every time I travel/Go to the Airport, I look and "size up" the people on my flight. It goes through my mind over and over again.. I know you cant judge a book by its cover, but you cant help it. Reading, and seeing all the numerous video clips from 9/11 who and this Time Square Bombing incident who knows what I would do in that situation. I mean in the 911 high jacking did people attempt to save their lives? Im just saying, you wondering sitting on the plane next to someone, are they sane or insane? I know its not just me who thinks this, its a combination of the people like this guy and he media who puts these images in our minds and give us this mindset. I think security should be as tight as it needs to be. I dont care if I have to get x-rayed and people can see my entire body, if that means safety then thats what needs to be done.

    May 6, 2010 at 1:14 pm | Report abuse |
  5. hoping a peaceful world

    Our immigration laws should be strict and should restrict any one from middle east enter the country or becoming us citizens. This way it won't affect the other hardworking immigrants in the country,

    May 6, 2010 at 1:17 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Ryan

    This is another example of our government failing to do their job. Intelligence needs to be of the utmost priority. This is the second failed terrorist attempt in the last 6 months, and the only reason they failed was because the terrorist screwed up, not because we caught them.

    The US is reactive rather than proactive, however we are too afraid to racially profile, so we frisk 90 year old ladies and 5 year old kids rather than stop someone because they racially fit the profile.

    We need to model ourselves after the Israelis. Israel is a country surrounded by enemies and they defray 95% of terrorist acts and there hasnt been an act of terrorism on an El Al flight since the 1970s.

    Also when you fly out of Israel, you can keep your shoes on and bring your water, because they are more concerned with who you are rather than your beverage of choice and smelling your dirty feet.

    May 6, 2010 at 1:23 pm | Report abuse |
  7. LedZep

    @Profession: Disagree
    @rivirivi: Disagree

    Current Islamic teaching creates violence and hatred toward Non-Muslims.
    Muslims curse non-Muslims loudly (in Arabic) during the Friday prayers in the Mosques.
    Most muslims sympathise with Islamic terrorists and their cause.
    It is comman practice to beat women and killing those who convert from Islam to other religion.
    Mohammed married a young girl seven years old (Aisha) when he was above 50 years old.
    Islam is very barbaric and there is no wonder almost all terrorists are muslims
    I can go on and on...

    May 6, 2010 at 1:23 pm | Report abuse |
  8. arvind nath pathak

    whether pak is the epicenter of terrorism or not usa needs to improve it's internal security measures to put moles from the same ethnic community to keep tabs on almost all likely terror prospects.lapses in timely dissemination of shehzad being on no fly list and still caught on plane to takeoff need to be rectified,security against nuclear terrorism to out think terrorist mindset modus operandi need to focused,delved upon with adequate security terrorize and gain media attention is aim of terror

    May 6, 2010 at 1:58 pm | Report abuse |
  9. IllEagle-J1

    Islam, is like the gun neither kill on their own. It takes a screwloose to missinterpret the use of either and decide to kill.
    Such insanity is not confined to Islam, christian fundementalist exhibit the same behavior.
    Solution? Outlaw religion on the basis that it breeds hatred? Replace it with ??
    As long as you have two groups who are trying to prove that they are the true PEOPLE, there can never be peace.
    Perhaps the SCI FIsolution is appropriate, let these groups battle it out for the entertainmnet of the rest of us. WIN WIN, deminish the groups gene pool, and provide laughs for the rest of us.

    May 6, 2010 at 2:11 pm | Report abuse |
  10. outraged

    Thank goodness there are people with sense, like Ryan. I also think that profiling is the best way to go; restriction of travel and naturalization of persons from the Middle East would be helpful as well. We are being ATTACKED here and no one cares how WE feel about it. Why should we display such useless sensitivity towards someone who may get offended if it saves lives! Most Arabs HATE our guts, they want us dead for the most part. We are labeled as the enemy and they teach everyone from day one that we deserve to die! What the hell is wrong with us if we cannot stand up for ourselves. Why do we have to put up with this? I can tell you one thing: if Israel was involved in even the most minute "terror" like even that threatened anyone else in Europe or here, I bet you anything that "strict" measures would have been taken against it; no one would be so damn sensitive about Israel. Condemnation would fly from every corner. But since it is Muslims/Arabs–we have to bow our heads and just take it right between the eyes, ha?

    If you are Muslim and good human beings-MAKE YOURSELVES HEARD. STAND WITH OTHER GOOD HUMAN BEINGS AGAINST THIS VIOLENCE. CONDEMN TERRORISM OPENLY. Go through racial profiling with the knowledge that YOU have nothing to hide. But someone next to you may, and that's what matters.

    May 6, 2010 at 2:15 pm | Report abuse |
  11. hoping a peaceful world

    I totally agree with the comment above

    Muslims who want to stay and work in the country talk loud and act aganist terrosism openly otherwise go back home.

    May 6, 2010 at 2:19 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Someone Please

    Can anyone please tell me what the FBI or NYPD is doing about this guys WIFE?!?!?!

    I can't believe nobody is DOING ANY JOURANLISM anymore...actually I can because all anyone ever wants to do are draw quick conclusions and report the fasted.

    Can someone please write an article about his wife. Who is she? Where is she? She really had no idea even though friends NOTICED a huge change in him. If it were the reverse and a woman did this they would be looking at the man as the mastermind...if a guy does it you just let the woman go free......

    Great work reporters..keep spewing out the same old facts we had 4 days ago...BRILLIANT

    May 6, 2010 at 2:24 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Professor

    You guys are very funny saying Middle Eastern people shall not be allowed to become naturalized. PAKISTAN WHICH IS THE MOST FAMOUS BREEDING PLACE OF ISLAMIC EXTREMISM IS NOT IN MIDDLE EAST!!!! Most Middle East countries have nothing to do with terrorism and are friendly to US. PEOPLE WAKE UP!!! PAKISTAN IS NOT IN MIDDLE EAST!!!

    May 6, 2010 at 2:38 pm | Report abuse |
  14. S. Roth

    One of the earliest news reports said that the van containing the bomb was parked illegally? Given that early reports are so frequently erroneous (too frequently), is this report true? If so, just add this act to another of the many clues left (deliberately?) by the alleged terrorist which allowed him to be identified and located so easily and quickly. Has anyone considered that there is something very peculiar about so many missteps by the alleged terrorist?

    May 6, 2010 at 3:57 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Joe

    Wait a minute. When that video was taken?. If that video shows the terrorrist standing not too far from where the SUV was, than he didn't expected the SUV would blow up. He wouldn't have stand near it. Too many videos, and some of them are not particular correct. The whole thing start looking that it was staged.

    May 9, 2010 at 10:55 pm | Report abuse |
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