Pakistani-American Faisal Shahzad, who was behind the botched car bombing attempt in New York’s Times Square on May 1 this year, was indicted on 10 counts by a federal grand jury on Thursday and faces multiple life sentences.
US prosecutors also made it clear in the indictment that they believed that the Tehrik-e-Taliban or the Pakistan Taliban trained and financed Shahzad.
US Attorney General Eric Holder said, in a statement, “The facts alleged in this indictment show that the Pakistani Taliban facilitated Faisal Shahzad’s attempted attack on American soil.”
The indictment stated that Shahzad had received explosives training in the Waziristan region of Pakistan in December last year.
It also noted that the Taliban had provided Shahzad with at least $ 12,000. It said that on February 25 this year, a co-conspirator in Pakistan sent Shahzad about $ 5000, that the latter received in cash in Massachusetts.
In addition, on April 10 this year, he got another installment of $ 7,000, again in cash, in Ronkonkoma in New York State, again at the direction of the co-conspirator.
Shahzad has been charged on ten counts and half-a-dozen of the offenses carry with them a maximum penalty of life imprisonment. These include attempt to use a weapon of mass destruction; conspiracy to use a WMD, possession of a firearm during and in relation to a conspiracy to use a WMD; attempted act of terrorism transcending national boundaries; conspiracy to commit an act of terrorism transcending national boundaries among others.
Indian-American prosecutor Preet Bharara is heading the prosecution as the US Attorney for the Southern District of New York.