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Shahzad has waived right to speedy arraignment: Senator

Faisal Shahzad, the Pakistani American arrested on charges of planting a bomb at the Times Square, has waived his right to a speedy court appearance, a top American Senator has said.

world Updated: May 12, 2010 11:54 IST

Faisal Shahzad, the Pakistani American arrested on charges of planting a bomb at the Times Square, has waived his right to a speedy court appearance, a top American Senator has said.

Senator Dianne Feinstein, Chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, following a close door intelligence briefing on the failed Times Square bomb attempt told reporters that Shahzad, 30, has waived his right to a speedy arraignment.

"That, of course, suggests he's continuing to provide valuable information to authorities," Feinstein said.

Shahzad was arrested on May 3, two days after the failed bombing attempt, but is yet to appear in a court.

The Senator said the likelihood of a Pakistani Taliban connection was very high in the case, and made a strong pitch for designating the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan as a terror outfit.

"I think there is a very high likelihood that there were interactions between this suspect and the Pakistani Taliban.

"I also believe that the Pakistani Taliban ought to be on the designated terrorist list, as well as the Haqqani network should be on the designated terrorist list," he told reporters.

Feinstein said there is a high likelihood that Shahzad did have training while he was in Pakistan, specifically in Waziristan from the Taliban.

Referring to the high profile cases of Nigerian terror suspect Abdulmutallab and Shahzad, the Senator said these reflect the prototypes of people that they may see more of.

He said people like Abdulmutallab, with no suspicious backgrounds might be "the new lone wolf" of the future.

"Abdulmutallab's father was a high-level and respected person in Nigeria.

"This individual's (Shahzad's) father was a flag officer in the Pakistani Air Force. He was a naturalised American citizen. He was educated in this country. He held a job in this country. At one point, he bought a home in this country. And he was, as one might say, clean on his record," he said.

Responding to a question, the Senator said he believes that there are grounds in the law now to revoke Shahzad's American citizenship.

"I don't think you need additional legislation to revoke his citizenship, because this is within five years of his having been naturalised, and that's the criteria.

"And the act that you can remove citizenship for, I believe, has been committed by this man," he said.