(Reuters) - New York police arrested a 27-year-old man they called a "lone wolf" militant on charges of plotting to build bombs to kill American soldiers returning from Iraq and Afghanistan.
Jose Pimentel, a follower of late Muslim cleric Anwar al-Awlaki, was arraigned Sunday night in state court on terrorism-related charges.
A U.S. citizen born in the Dominican Republic, Pimentel was arrested on Saturday in a Manhattan apartment while assembling a bomb, police said.
"We had to act quickly because he was in fact putting this bomb together," said Police Commissioner Ray Kelly.
Pimentel admitted he "took active steps to build the bomb, including shaving the match heads and drilling holes in the pipes" and was "one hour away from completing it," said the criminal complaint filed by the Manhattan District Attorney.Wow, it's like Martha Stewart for Islamic sociopaths. (The editor obviously has a tin ear, though: surely "How to Build a Bomb in Mom's Kitchen" would have scanned much better, but I guess that's the best he could do given that English probably isn't his first language.)
Authorities called him a "lone wolf" who had converted to Islam and became a radical.
Pimentel, who has not been charged in federal court, faces life in prison if convicted.
He was under surveillance since May 2009 and considered New York police cars, a New Jersey police station and U.S. post office among his potential targets, officials said.
As a reader of the online magazine "Inspire" published by al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, Pimentel took instructions from an article "How to Build a Bomb in the Kitchen of Your Mom," Kelly said...
Update: In light of the above-mentioned "surveillance" helping nab the "loner," this kvetching seems both ironic and overwrought.