NEW YORK (AP) — Federal authorities on Wednesday
arrested a man they said was plotting to blow up the
Federal Reserve building in Manhattan, just blocks
from the World Trade Center site.
Quazi Mohammad Rezwanul Ahsan Nafis, 21, was
arrested in a sting operation Wednesday morning
after he parked a van filled with what he believed
were explosives outside the building and tried to
detonate it in a suicide mission, authorities said.
Earlier in the day, he went to a warehouse and
assembled what he believed to be a 1,000-pound bomb
using inert explosives provided by federal agents.
He also recorded a videotaped statement in which he
said, "We will not stop until we attain victory or
martyrdom," federal prosecutors said.
Authorities said Nafis proposed several spots for
his attack, including the New York Stock Exchange —
and that in a written letter taking responsibility
for the Federal Reserve job he was about to carry
out, he said he wanted to "destroy America."
The FBI and NYPD arrest a suspected terrorist
involved in an apparent plot to attack the Federal
Reserve of New York, reports WNBC's Jonathan Dienst.
By Jonathan Dienst and Shimon Prokupecz,
NEW YORK - A suspected terrorist parked a van
packed with what he thought was a 1,000-pound bomb
next to the Federal Reserve Bank in Lower Manhattan
and tried to detonate it Wednesday morning before he
was arrested in a terror sting operation,
The suspect, 21-year-old Quazi Mohammad Rezwanul
Ahsan Nafis, is a Bangladeshi national who came to
the U.S. on a student visa in January for the
specific purpose of launching a terror attack here,
authorities said. He allegedly told an undercover
agent last month that he hoped the attack would
disrupt the presidential election, saying "You know
what, this election might even stop," according to
the criminal complaint against him.
The complaint said Nafis wrote a statement
claiming responsibility for what he thought would be
the Fed attack, saying he wanted to "destroy
America" by going after its economy. He referred to
"our beloved Sheikh Osama bin Laden" in the
He also proposed various other targets beyond the
Fed building at 33 Liberty Street, just blocks from
the World Trade Center site, prosecutors said. He
also considered targeting a "high-ranking U.S.
official" as well as the New York Stock Exchange,
Nafis, who lives in Jamaica, Queens, allegedly
sought out al-Qaida contacts to help him,
unknowingly recruiting an FBI source in the process.
At that point, the FBI and NYPD began monitoring him
as he developed the plot, prosecutors said.
An undercover FBI agent posed as an al-Qaida
facilitator, supplying him with 20 50-pound bags of
what he thought were explosives to use in building
his bomb. He also visited the Lower Manhattan site
multiple times as he planned the attack, officials
Prosecutors say Nafis met the agent Wednesday
morning and put the bomb inside a van before driving
to the Fed building, assembling the detonator while
The pair parked the van by the Fed, got out and
walked to a hotel, where Nafis recorded a video
statement he meant to be released after the attack.
He then tried to detonate the purported bomb,
Law enforcement officials stress that the plot was
a sting operation monitored by the FBI and NYPD and
the public was never at risk. The materials he
believed were explosives had been rendered
inoperable, officials said.
Nafis is expected in court later Wednesday. He is
charged with attempting to use a weapon of mass
destruction and attempting to provide material
support to al-Qaida.