New York bombing suspect charged

Suspected New York City bus terminal bomber Akayed Ullah charged with terror offences, police say

Suspected New York City bus terminal bomber Akayed Ullah has been charged with terror offences, police say.

The 27-year-old Bangladeshi immigrant was wounded in the attack at the Post Authority Bus Terminal in Manhattan on Monday morning.

Mr Ullah is reported to be in a serious condition in hospital after suffering burns when a crude device that was strapped to his body exploded.

Three other people suffered minor wounds in the blast during rush hour.

The New York Police Department (NYPD) tweeted on Tuesday that Mr Ullah had been charged with criminal possession of a weapon, supporting an act of terrorism and making a “terroristic threat”.

He told police investigators he had been inspired by Christmas terror attacks in Europe and selected the Port Authority bus terminal after seeing a number of festive posters on the subway walls, US media report.

Mr Ullah said the planned attack had been motivated by US air strikes on IS targets in Syria and elsewhere, the New York Times reports.

Reports say he used piping, nails, a 9-volt battery and Christmas lights wire to build the device. It was affixed to his body with Velcro straps.

The suspect’s home in the New York City borough of Brooklyn is being searched. Police believe he acted alone.

NYPD Deputy Commissioner of Intelligence and Counterterrorism John Miller told CBS that the suspect was “not particularly struggling financially” and was not on police or FBI radar.

“This is somewhat characteristic of what we’re seeing across the world, which is somebody who turns up one day, out of the blue,” he said on Tuesday.

Mr Ullah emigrated to the US on a family visa in 2011 from the Chittagong area of Bangladesh.

The Bangladeshi government says he had no criminal record in the country, which he last visited in September. The visit lasted about six weeks, his uncle told the Associated Press news agency.

Mr Ullah’s wife did not join him in the US. She and other family members are now being questioned to try to understand how he was radicalised.

US President Donald Trump has said Monday’s attack, which followed a terror attack in Manhattan in October that killed eight people, “highlights the urgent need… to enact legislative reforms to protect the American people”.

“America must fix its lax immigration system, which allows far too many dangerous, inadequately vetted people to access our country,” Mr Trump added.

Inflation hits 3.1%, lifted by airfares and computer games, as the squeeze on household incomes continues.