Washington: A 26-year-old US citizen of Bangladeshi descent, who defines himself as an Al Qaeda supporter, has pleaded guilty to plotting an attack on the Pentagon and the US Congress with explosives-laden remote-controlled model airplanes, BBC reported Saturday.
Rezwan Ferdaus planned to damage the US buildings by throwing off the bombs from the model airplanes, but was arrested in September 2011 when he ordered delivery of six assault rifles, three grenades and explosives from undercover FBI agents who he believed were Al Qaeda members, RIA Novosti said citing NBC.
Ferdaus called the Pentagon “the head and heart of the snake” and said he wanted to destroy the “enemies of Allah”, BBC said, citing an affidavit released by the US Department of Justice.
The would-be bomber initially faced six charges, but prosecutors dropped four of them after he agreed to cooperate with the investigators and has pleaded guilty.
Prosecutors and defence lawyers agreed to recommend a 17-year jail term.
Ferdaus said he would accept the 17-year term under a plea deal with the prosecution.
He could have faced 35 years for the two charges together if the case had gone to trial. Sentencing is scheduled for Nov 1.
Ferdaus, born in Massachusetts to parents of Bangladeshi descent, is a physics graduate of Northeastern University in Boston.
He obtained a remote-controlled plane up to two metres in length that could be guided by GPS and fly at 160 km per hour.
In June 2011, he allegedly travelled to Washington on a surveillance trip.
Ferdaus also plotted to target US soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan using improvised explosive devices, according to the prosecution.
In 2011, he allegedly supplied the FBI operatives with 12 mobile phone detonators intended to be used by Al Qaeda operatives to set off bombs in the Middle East.