Key suspect Sayfullo Saipov has been charged by United States prosecutors with causing the deaths of eight people in New York by mowing them down in a truck in lower Manhattan.
Saipov was charged with providing Daesh (IS) with material support and resources.
He was shot during the incident by NYPD officers and received treatment in a hospital.
Saipov spoke freely to the authorities and waved his right hand to prevent incrimination.
The attack on Tuesday saw a rental truck driven down a bicycle lane in Lower Manhattan, hitting multiple people.
According to the Federal Court Papers:
- Saipov planned the attack two months ago
- He chose Halloween because the streets would be crowded
- He was going to display a Daesh (IS) flag on the truck but decided not to because it would’ve draw attention
- Law enforcement has recovered 90 graphic and violent Daesh videos from his phones
- He indicated they inspired him, especially one where the Daesh leader asks Muslims to avenge the deaths in Iraq
NYPD Deputy Police Commissioner Miller said, “He appears to have followed almost exactly to a ‘T’ the instructions ISIS provided on social media to carry out such an attack”.
The FBI has requested information on Mukhammadzoir Kadirov but William Sweeney, assistant director of the FBI’s New York field office, told reporters “We are no longer looking for the person the information went out about” then added, “We have found him and I’ll leave it at that.”
Sayfullo Saipov lived in Tampa, Florida, then moved to Paterson, New Jersey.
He came to the United States from Uzbekistan in 2010 and is a legal resident of the country.
The Saipov attack looks remarkably like the attacks in Barcelona, Spain in August this year and on Bastille Day in Nice, France last year. Both were claimed by Daesh and both used rented vehicles that they drove down areas where only are pedestrians allowed.
US President Donald Trump has called for the termination of the “Diversity Visa Lottery Program” in favor of a merit-based immigration system.
Mr Trump blamed Senator Chuck Schumer, a Democratic Party senator representing New York, for allowing the assailant to gain entry to the U.S. because Schumer had sponsored the Diversity Immigrant Visa program.
Trump vowed to reinstate his travel ban.
More details to follow. Image 1 from court files.