Thursday, May 21, 2009

Feds: NY Suspects Disappointed Couldn't Attack WTC

This is an update to the "Bronx Terrorists ‘wanted to commit jihad’" story. Personally I think that if they are found guilty they should be hanged at Ground Zero.

Feds: NY suspects disappointed couldn't attack WTC

WHITE PLAINS, N.Y. – Four men arrested after planting what they thought were explosives near two New York City synagogues were disappointed that the World Trade Center wasn't still around to attack, a federal prosecutor said Thursday as the men appeared in court for the first time.

The suspects were arrested Wednesday night, shortly after planting a 37-pound mock explosive device in the trunk of a car outside the Riverdale Temple and two mock bombs in the backseat of a car outside the Riverdale Jewish Center, another synagogue a few blocks away, authorities said. Police blocked their escape with an 18-wheel truck, smashing their tinted SUV windows and apprehending the unarmed suspects.

Authorities said the men also plotted to shoot down a military plane.
James Cromitie, 55; David Williams, 28; Onta Williams, 32; and Laguerre Payen, all of Newburgh, were charged with conspiracy to use weapons of mass destruction within the United States and conspiracy to acquire and use anti-aircraft missiles.
All the suspects except Payen appeared in federal court in White Plains on Thursday, their hands shackled to their waists. Payen was expected to appear in court later Thursday.

Lawyers for the defendants, all of whom are U.S. citizens, did not seek bail. In arguing against bail, Assistant U.S. Attorney Eric Snyder told the judge "it's hard to envision a more chilling plot" and described the men as "extremely violent."
They were "disappointed...that the best target (the World Trade Center) was hit already," he said, adding that the men were "eager to bring death to Jews." He also said Cromitie wanted to see what he did on TV and be able to say, "I'm the one who did that."

Earlier, Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly spoke at a news conference outside the Riverdale Jewish Center in the Bronx.

"They stated that they wanted to commit jihad," Kelly said. "They were disturbed about what happened in Afghanistan and Pakistan, that Muslims were being killed."
Kelly said he believed the men knew each other through prison. They had long rap sheets for charges including drug possession and assault. During the hearing Cromitie told the judge he had used marijuana on Wednesday but was clear-headed enough to understand the proceedings.

An official told The Associated Press that three of the men are converts to Islam. The official spoke on condition of anonymity because the person was not authorized to discuss details of the investigation.

Payen, who officials said is of Haitian descent, occasionally attended a Newburgh mosque. His statements on Islam often had to be corrected, according to Assistant Imam Hamin Rashada, who met Payen through a program that helps prisoners re-enter society.

writers Devlin Barrett in Washington, Michael Hill in Newburgh, N.Y., and Jim Fitzgerald in White Plains, N.Y., contributed to this report. (This version CORRECTS UPDATES with court hearing, including appearances by 3 of 4 defendants, their ages, all U.S. citizens, appearing in shackles, other details; corrects quote attributed to Nancy Rouemy. Multimedia: A pdf of the criminal complaint against the accused temple bombing conspirators is in the _documents folder slugged temple_bomb_complaint.pdf. AP Video.)

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