Federal judge upholds conviction for subway bomber Akayed Ullah
A federal judge upheld a Manhattan jury’s conviction of a Bangladeshi immigrant for blowing up a pipe bomb in a crowded subway tunnel in Times Square, according to a decision released Monday.
Lawyers for Akayed Ullah, 30, had challenged the 2018 guilty verdict on several grounds — including claiming that their client had not acted on behalf of ISIS when he detonated the crude explosive that injured only himself.
But Circuit Judge Richard Sullivan, who presided over the Manhattan federal trial before he was promoted to the appeals court, knocked down the assertion.
“The record evidence…amply establishes that Defendant acted at ISIS’s direction by heeding the call of the organization’s propaganda and recruiting materials,” Sullivan wrote of the bungled Dec. 11, 2017, terrorist attack in a pedestrian tunnel during the morning rush hour.
“Perhaps most importantly, Defendant told police that he carried out the attack ‘for the Islamic State.’”
The decision notes that authorities recovered several ISIS propaganda videos from Ullah’s computer.
During the one-week trial, Ullah’s lawyers admitted that he had detonated the home-made device, which was strapped to his body, but argued it was to kill himself — not commuters.
They told jurors the cabbie-turned-electrician was protesting American policies that he felt were hurting Muslims.
Ullah, whose sentencing remains in limbo due to the pandemic, faces a mandatory minimum of 30 years and a maximum of life.
He was convicted of six counts — including providing material support to a foreign terrorist organization, use of a weapon of mass destruction, and bombing a place of public use.
His lawyer, Amy Gallicchio, declined to comment.
Source: New York Post