A California man arrested on child pornography charges has been linked to the foiled alleged plot by a young Bangladeshi to blow up the New York Federal Reserve, the New York Times reported yesterday.
The Times said Howard Carter II was arrested after the FBI found images and video files containing child pornography on a computer near his San Diego apartment.
After tracing the computer back to Carter, investigators found e-mails on it addressed to “Yaqeen,” a name that had surfaced in the investigation of the bomb plot.
Quazi Mohammed Rezwanul Ahsan Nafis, 21, was arrested after trying to detonate what he thought was a 454kg bomb, but in fact was a dummy provided in an elaborate sting operation, according to federal prosecutors.
The Times said Carter was placed under surveillance as early as August, but officials waited until after the Nafis arrest to arrest him.
Prosecutors say Nafis traveled to the US in January in order to carry out a terrorist attack and that he had sought out al-Qaeda contacts and potential recruits.
One of the potential recruits was actually an informant for the FBI, who then took part in the sting.
Nafis allegedly wrote a statement claiming responsibility for his planned attack saying he wanted to “destroy America” and referred to Osama bin Laden as the “beloved.”
He has been charged with attempting to use a weapon of mass destruction and attempting to support al-Qaeda.