‘Lone wolf’ terror plotter arrested in New York


New York : A “lone wolf Al Qaeda sympathiser” who plotted to bomb police cars and postal facilities in Manhattan as also US soldiers was arrested as he was preparing to create working explosives, officials said.

Support TwoCircles

Jose Pimentel, 27, described as a “lone wolf” with no ties to international groups, planned to carry out a one-man terror spree in retaliation for the US killing of Qaeda cleric Anwar al-Awlaki in September, according to Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly.

“He was a reader of Al Qaeda’s slick online magazine Inspire – and inspire him it did,” New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg said.

But Pimentel was not part of a larger terrorism plot. “There is no evidence he worked with anyone else,” Bloomberg said. “He appears to be … a lone wolf.”

Pimentel’s was the 14th terror attack thwarted by the New York Police since the 9/11 attacks, the mayor said, and justifies the city’s counter-terrorism efforts.

His intended targets were US military personnel who had served in Iraq and Afghanistan, as well as US postal facilities and police in New York and Bayonne, New Jersey, officials said.

An unemployed native of the Dominican Republican who is a US citizen, Pimentel had been monitored by authorities since 2009 and his extreme positions “made some of his like-minded friends nervous,” said Kelly.

Pimentel even talked about changing his name to Osama Hussein – in honor of two of his now deceased idols, Al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden and Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein, he said.

Last August, the suspect allegedly decided to carry out the bomb plot. He “jacked up his speed” after Sep 30, when Al-Awlaki was killed in a US drone strike in Yemen, Kelly said.