October 5th, 2010
10:40 AM ET

Times Square bomb plotter sentenced to life in prison

A 30-year-old Pakistani-American was sentenced to life in prison Tuesday for attempting to detonate a vehicle bomb in Times Square this year.

Faisal Shahzad was defiant before a judge sentenced him Tuesday, saying "the defeat of the U.S. is imminent."

Shahzad pleaded guilty in June to all 10 counts in an indictment against him. At the time, he told the court, "I want to plead guilty 100 times because unless the United States pulls out of Afghanistan and Iraq, until they stop drone strikes in Somalia, Pakistan and Yemen and stop attacking Muslim lands, we will attack the United States and be out to get them."


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Filed under: Crime • Justice • National security • New York • Terrorism • Times Square • Times Square Car Bomb • U.S.
October 5th, 2010
09:40 AM ET

On the Radar: Chile miners, murder jury, Times Square plot

Chilean miners rescue attempt - With 160 meters (about 500 feet) to go until the Plan B drill reaches 33 trapped miners, a breakthrough to the men may be imminent. Then what?

At Camp Hope, the makeshift tent city where hundreds of family members are living, widespread celebrations will likely break out as the miners' loved ones receive the news they have waited more than 60 days to hear.

Connecticut home invasion murder trial - Jurors are expected to resume their deliberations Tuesday morning in the trial of Steven Hayes, one of the men accused of killing three members of a Connecticut family in a 2007 home invasion. Hayes, 47, who has pleaded not guilty, is on trial in New Haven, Connecticut, in the slayings of Jennifer Hawke-Petit and her two daughters.


June 22nd, 2010
03:29 PM ET

Officials move to designate Pakistani Taliban as terror group

The State Department intends to designate the Pakistani Taliban (TTP) as a "foreign terrorist organization" after the suspect charged in the failed Times Square bombing admitted to being trained by the group, two senior officials tell CNN.

Both officials called the decision to designate the group inevitable after Faisal Shahzad, the 30-year-old Pakistani-American suspect in the failed Times Square bombing case, entered pleas of guilty Monday in federal court to all 10 counts he was facing after the botched attempt to ignite a vehicle bomb in Times Square on May 1.

There is still some process before the group is added. Both officials stressed that the State Department still needs to do its due diligence in following the strict legal guidelines involved in officially adding a group to the blacklist, but that the intent to designate the group as a foreign terrorist organization is there. The designation would freeze any of the group's assets in the United States and impose financial and travel restrictions on its members.


June 21st, 2010
05:27 PM ET

Shahzad pleads guilty to Times Square charges

Faisal Shahzad, a suspect in the May 1 failed Times Square bombing attempt,
entered pleas of guilty Monday in federal court, an administration official
told CNN.

An administration official said a plea deal was negotiated beforehand, and
Shahzad entered guilty pleas to each of the 10 counts against him. This source, a White House legal source, said President Obama was made aware of the negotiations.

Read the full CNN.com story

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Filed under: New York • Times Square • Times Square Car Bomb
May 26th, 2010
08:41 AM ET

Pakistan makes another Times Square-linked arrest

Pakistani officials have detained an 11th person in connection with the investigation into the failed May car bombing of New York's Times Square, a Pakistani intelligence source told CNN Wednesday.


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Filed under: Pakistan • Times Square Car Bomb
May 20th, 2010
09:42 PM ET

'Reason to believe' Pakistani Taliban plotting to strike U.S.

U.S. intelligence has strong reason to believe that the Pakistani Taliban is actively plotting to hit interests in the U.S. and American targets overseas, a U.S. official told CNN Thursday.

The concerns about the group that authorities say directed the Times Square bombing plot are coming from multiple streams of information, including from Faisal Shahzad, the Times Square bombing suspect, the official said.

The official told CNN that CIA Director Leon Panetta and National Security Adviser Jim Jones relayed the new terror threat information to Pakistan's government on their trip there earlier this week.

The threat information was not down to the level of specific cities, the official said.

May 20th, 2010
03:53 PM ET

Detained man had Time Square bombing suspect's name, number

One of two men arrested in Massachusetts last week had an envelope with attempted Times Square bombing suspect Faisal Shahzad's name on it and a cell phone with Shahzad's name and phone number in its memory, a spokesman for Immigration and Customs Enforcement told CNN.

ICE spokesman Brian Hale said the information was revealed during an immigration court hearing in Boston for Aftab Ali Khan. The envelope had a phone number on it that investigators concluded was Shahzad's.

Aftab Ali Khan and his uncle, Pir Khan - along with a third man, Mohammad Rahman, who was taken into custody in Maine - are believed to have been involved in an informal money transfer network that provided cash to Shahzad, U.S. officials said. But the Khans' lawyer, Saher Macarius, said they do not know Shahzad and did not give him any money.

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Filed under: Times Square Car Bomb
May 19th, 2010
10:58 AM ET

First photo of Times Square bombing suspect since arrest

Faisal Shahzad was arrested in connection with an attempted bombing in Times Square.

[Updated at 10:51 a.m.] CNN's Susan Candiotti has obtained Faisal Shahzad's mugshot, which is the first new photo of the attempted Times Square bomber, since he was arrested for his association with the plot in Manhattan.

The photo was taken after Faisal Shahzad was formally placed in the custody of the U.S. Marshals on Wednesday. He’s shown wearing a grey sweatshirt — the same clothes he wore in court. Unlike earlier photos taken before he was arrested, he now has a slight beard.

[Posted at 10:40 a.m.] Attempted Times Square bombing suspect Faisal Shahzad is being held at the Metropolitan Correctional Center in lower Manhattan, a federal law enforcement official told CNN.

May 18th, 2010
03:29 PM ET

Times Square bombing suspect to appear in court

Times Square bombing suspect Faisal Shahzad is scheduled to make a court appearance Tuesday afternoon in New York, federal prosecutors announced.

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Filed under: Times Square Car Bomb
May 18th, 2010
12:59 PM ET

Official: Times Square bomb suspect eyed other targets

Faisal Shahzad is accused of attempting to bomb Times Square in New York.

The man accused of attempting to blow up a car bomb in Times Square also considered New York's Rockefeller Center, Grand Central Terminal, the World Financial Center and Connecticut helicopter manufacturer Sikorsky as other potential targets, a senior counterterrorism official with oversight of the investigation said Tuesday.

Faisal Shahzad had gone so far as to do surveillance of some of the additional targets, the official told CNN.

Shahzad, a Pakistani-born naturalized U.S. citizen, is accused of attempting to set off a car bomb in Times Square on May 1. E-mails obtained by CNN indicate he was looking for a way to strike back against "foreign infidel forces" he believed were oppressing the Muslim world.

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Filed under: Terrorism • Times Square Car Bomb
May 18th, 2010
08:15 AM ET

U.S. officials to visit Pakistan in Times Square probe

CIA Director Leon Panetta and National Security Adviser James Jones are traveling to Pakistan to meet with officials there about the status of the Times Square bombing investigation, a U.S. official said Tuesday.


Filed under: Terrorism • Times Square Car Bomb • Uncategorized • World
May 13th, 2010
01:05 PM ET

Source: Search warrants tied to Shahzad financing

Authorities executed search warrants relating to Faisal Shahzad's finances.

[Updated at 1:05 p.m.] A federal law enforcement tells Susan Candiotti that the FBI has also conducted search warrants related to the ongoing Times Square investigation at two locations on Eastern Long Island in Suffolk County, NY.

Suffolk County Police spokesman Tim Motz told CNN that officers from that department are assisting the FBI in the execution of these warrants. There have been no arrests.

[Updated at 12:19 p.m.] A third person has been arrested on immigration charges in Thursday's raids in the Northeast, a U.S. official told CNN.

[Updated at 12:08 p.m.] Prompt Printing, a printing shop in Camden, New Jersey, is among the targets of Thursday's raids by federal agents stemming from the investigation into this month's failed car bombing in Times Square, a federal law enforcement source said.

A federal source also says a home in Cherry Hill, New Jersey was raided and that it is believed to be the home of the print shop's owner. 

[Updated at 11:41 a.m.] A source close to the investigation says the raids carried out this morning were focused on a system of “cash couriers” who bring money into the United States from overseas. Some of that money is thought to be made available to finance operations like the abortive Times Square attack. The source says the warrants for Thursday’s raids came as a result of the investigation into the Times Square incident, but it has not been determined conclusively if the alleged courier system under investigation is tied to that plot.

The source says two individuals have been under surveillance at least since Wednesday, but could not confirm that they were the individuals arrested today. The source says there is no direct evidence linking those under surveillance to the courier system, but they are being investigated for possible links. The source adds that Faisal Shahzad continues to provide information to investigators. FULL POST

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Filed under: Times Square Car Bomb
May 7th, 2010
01:16 PM ET

Wedding photo of Times Square bombing suspect surfaces

This wedding photo shows Faisal Shahzad and his wife Huma Mian

A wedding photo has surfaced showing Times Square bombing suspect Faisal Shahzad and his wife Huma Mian.

The photo, posted on Mian's brother's MySpace page, shows the couple in traditional Pakistani attire.

Shahzad has been charged with attempting to use a weapon of mass destruction, acts of terrorism transcending national boundaries, and three other counts in connection with the incident. If convicted, he faces up to life in prison.

May 7th, 2010
09:55 AM ET

On the Radar: Oil leak, Times Square plot, slain UVA student

Officials say they hope this massive dome will help cap the oil leak in the Gulf of Mexico.

Gulf oil spill - A massive dome began its descent into the Gulf of Mexico to cap a gushing oil leak about 5,000 feet below the surface, a BP official said Friday. CNN will take a look at how the dome would work and what impact the spill is having on tourism in the Pensacola, Florida, region as well as continue to bring you the latest developments on the oil spill.

Times Square bomb plot - A senior law enforcement official says investigators think Times Square bomb suspect Faisal Shahzad had help. They believe he has ties to a Pakistani Taliban group, the official says. CNN reporters will continue to dig into this story and give you the latest details about the plot and the investigation into Shahzad and his background.


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."


May 6th, 2010
09:08 AM ET

On the Radar: Oil spill, Times Square probe, adoption

A boat picks up booms that were placed in the Gulf of Mexico to soak up oil.

Gulf oil spill - A four-story containment vessel is expected to arrive Thursday at the site of the Gulf of Mexico's gushing oil well, where BP will attempt to lower the container onto a ruptured deep-water pipe. Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano, Commerce Secretary Gary Locke and Administrator Jane Lubchenco of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration plan to travel to the Gulf Coast on Thursday. We'll continue to bring you the latest details on the story as they come in.

Times Square probe - Investigators continued their quest for information Thursday in the case against Faisal Shahzad, who is accused of driving a car bomb into midtown New York. He made a practice run in Manhattan the day before he allegedly tried to blow up an SUV in Times Square, according to a law enforcement source with knowledge of his questioning. We'll continue to bring you the latest details on the story as they come in.


May 5th, 2010
09:21 PM ET

Latest Updates: Times Square bomb investigation

Faisal Shahzad has been charged in association with the Times Square bombing plot.

[Updated at 9:21 p.m.] Authorities in Pakistan have rounded up a number of people for questioning, as U.S. law enforcement sought Wednesday to piece together the actions and motivations of the Times Square car bombing suspect.

Iftikhar Mian, the father-in-law of suspect Faisal Shahzad, and Tauseef Ahmed, Shahzad's friend, were picked up in Karachi on Tuesday, two intelligence officials said.

Read the full CNN.com story

[Updated at 8:47 p.m.]  An official familiar with the investigation into accused Times Square bomb plotter Faisal Shahzad said Wednesday that Shahzad felt Islam was under attack.

- From CNN Homeland Security Correspondent Jeanne Meserve

[Updated at 5:19 p.m.] The suspect in last Saturday's botched bombing in Times Square was driven last July to a meeting with at least one senior Taliban leader in Pakistan by a man taken into custody Tuesday, a senior Pakistani official said Wednesday.

The official told CNN that Muhammed Rehan, who was detained Tuesday in Karachi, drove Faisal Shahzad on July 7 in a pickup truck to Peshawar.

At some point, they headed to the Waziristan region, where they met with one or more senior Taliban leaders, the official said. Rehan is believed to have links to the militant outfit Jaish-e-Mohammed, which is close to al Qaeda and the Pakistani Taliban, the official said.

- CNN's Reza Sayah and Samson Desta contributed to this report.


May 5th, 2010
10:12 AM ET

DHS changing no-fly list policy after Times Square plot

The Department of Homeland Security is changing its no-fly list update policies to prevent a repeat of what happened Monday, when the suspect in the Times Square attempted bombing was allowed to board a plane despite his name being on the no-fly list, a DHS official told CNN Wednesday.


May 5th, 2010
09:39 AM ET

On the Radar: Times Square plot, immigration, Gulf oil

Police stand guard in Times Square following an attempted bombing.

Times Square investigation - Questions remained in the days following the dramatic arrest of the Times Square bombing suspect, who was captured only minutes before his plane was scheduled to take off for Dubai in the United Arab Emirates. A court hearing is possible Wednesday as investigators in the United States and Pakistan continue to chase leads. 

We'll also take a look into what role the no-fly list played into capturing Faisal Shahzad, what it means to be on the no-fly list and how effective it may be in identifying suspicious individuals. Our reporters are also looking into Shahzad's history and what his family and life were like in the U.S. before the Times Square plot took shape. We'll also continue to provide constant updates on the blog to keep you up to date on any developments in the story. 

Arizona immigration - The Tucson and Flagstaff city councils reportedly have voted to sue the state of Arizona over the state's new law targeting illegal immigrants. Members of the Phoenix Suns basketball team, meanwhile, plan to wear jerseys that say "Los Suns" in a playoff game Wednesday. The team's managing partner, in announcing the jerseys, said that "frustration with the federal government's failure to deal with the issue of illegal immigration resulted in passage of a flawed state law." 


May 4th, 2010
09:16 PM ET

Latest Updates: Times Square car bomb scare

[Updated at 9:15 p.m. ET] The U.S. Attorney's Office for the Southern District of New York said Shahzad would not appear in court until at least Thursday as he continued to be questioned.

[Updated at 8:36 p.m. ET] Fireworks used in the attempted car bombing of New York's Times Square were purchased from a store in Pike County in northeastern Pennsylvania, a federal law enforcement source told CNN Tuesday.

The source says the M-88 fireworks Faisal Shahzad is accused of placing in a Nissan Pathfinder were bought at a Phantom Fireworks store in Matamoras.

[Updated at 8:32 p.m. ET] Authorities conducting surveillance of the Times Square car bombing suspect lost him late in the day Monday before he arrived at New York's John F. Kennedy International Airport, where he was ultimately arrested, a senior counterterrorism official said Tuesday.

However, an FBI official responded that surveillance operations are designed with redundancies in place, and that agents had to avoid tipping off suspect Faisal Shahzad that he was being followed. Shahzad was arrested shortly before midnight Monday at JFK airport after he boarded Emirates Flight 202 to Dubai, United Arab Emirates.

He had been put on a no-fly list earlier Monday, but at the time of this ticket purchase, the airline had not refreshed its information so his name did not raise any red flags.

But U.S. Customs and Border Protection, which reviews all flight manifests, caught his name when the airline sent the agency its passenger list, according to the counterterrorism official.

- CNN's Frances Townsend


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