Akayed Ullah, 27, faces charges that include supporting a foreign terrorist organization, using a weapon of mass destruction and carrying out a terrorist attack against a mass transit system, according to an indictment filed in federal court in Manhattan. He faces life in prison if convicted.
Ullah was previously charged in a criminal complaint filed by prosecutors shortly after his arrest last month. His court-appointed lawyer, Amy Gallicchio, could not immediately be reached for comment on Wednesday.
According to prosecutors, Ullah attempted to detonate a pipe bomb secured to his body in a pedestrian tunnel in the subway station in Manhattan's Times Square that is connected to the sprawling Port Authority Bus Terminal on the morning of December 11.
Ullah was hospitalized for injuries suffered after the bomb ignited but failed to detonate as intended, while three other people suffered minor injuries, according to prosecutors.
Ullah told police officers after the blast that he "did it for the Islamic State," according to the criminal complaint.
Prosecutors said that Ullah, who has lived in the United States since 2011, began his self-radicalization in 2014 when he started viewing pro-Islamic State materials online. Inside Ullah's passport, which was recovered from his home, was a handwritten note that read, “O AMERICA, DIE IN YOUR RAGE,” according to the complaint.
Monirul Islam, head of the Bangladesh police’s counterterrorism unit, told Reuters shortly after the attack in December that his country had found no evidence linking Ullah to militants in his home country.
A prominent New Jersey doctor hired a man to kill his wife after she threatened to expose the illegal prescription drug operation he ran out of his practice with a motorcycle gang, prosecutors said Tuesday.
Dr. James Kauffman, 68, of Linwood, a small town outside Atlantic City, was arrested and charged with first-degree murder more than five years after his wife, local radio host April Kauffman, was found dead inside their home. An alleged co-conspirator, Ferdinand Augello, 61, also faces first-degree murder charges.
The Atlantic County prosecutor’s office, which investigated the case along with the Federal Bureau of Investigation and other agencies, said James Kauffman and Augello presided over an illegal opioid network that was run out of Kauffman’s office through an alliance with the Pagan Outlaw Motorcycle Gang.
The killing took place on the morning of May 10, 2012, officials said. A 911 report was made about an unconscious and unresponsive woman at Kauffman’s house around 11:30 a. Kauffman told officers who arrived at the house that he found his 47-year-old wife dead in the master bedroom on the second floor, according to a release.
Police and emergency medical responders found April Kauffman unconscious and lying face down on the floor, with wounds from multiple gunshots, prosecutors said. She was declared dead about 11:45 a. m.
The case languished for years despite receiving media attention from around the world.
Now the Atlantic County prosecutor’s office said that it believes that Kauffman’s killing came after divorce discussions took a particularly bitter turn.
James Kauffman stated he would sooner kill April than grant the divorce and lose ‘half his empire,’ ” a release from the prosecutor’s office said. e “threatened” certain steps to obtain a divorce, spending as much money as she could and threatening to expose the illegal drug operation at James Kauffman’s medical office, prosecutors said.
Kauffman solicited Augello to murder his wife in 2011, the office said.
Ultimately, James Kauffman made the decision to kill April Kauffman,” the office reported in a release, adding that “Kauffman told Augello that April threatened to expose the illegal OXY distribution network they had established.
Ed Jacobs, Kauffman’s lawyer, told the Philadelphia Inquirer that Kauffman has long maintained his innocence. Suffice it to say that Dr. Kauffman has consistently denied any involvement whatsoever in the homicide of his wife,” Jacobs told the newspaper. It was not immediately clear whether Augello or the other defendants in the case had lawyers.
Prosecutors said the racketeering operation involved Kauffman giving free pain medication prescriptions to people sent by Augello, who would receive about $1,000 per prescription and a number of pills once they had been filled. Those without insurance were required to pay $100 per visit, prosecutors said. Six other people besides Kauffman and Augello were charged with racketeering in the case; every person involved in the enterprise was “a Pagan, former Pagan or an associate of a Pagan,” prosecutors said.
Prosecutors said Augello propositioned a number of people connected with the Pagans for the killing. After nearly a year, he found Francis Mullholland, a cousin of a Pagan associate and a member of the drug enterprise, prosecutors said.
On the day of April Kauffman’s death, Mullholland was given a ride to the house, prosecutors said. The doors were left open and Mullholland went inside, shot her twice and left, prosecutors said. They believe that both Mullholland and his cousin were given payments; Mullholland said he was given $20,000 for his role, but officials believe that number may be higher.
Mulholland died after what officials believe was an accidental overdose in 2013, NJ. com reported.
The drug enterprise continued for more than five years after the killing, prosecutors said, until James Kauffman was arrested in June.
Officials at the time found Kauffman at his office in Egg Harbor Township while executing a search warrant, according to news reports. Prosecutors said that he brandished a 9mm handgun in front of officers, surrendering only after a standoff involving a hostage negotiator. He was charged with unlawful possession of a weapon and obstruction, the prosecutor’s office said. fficials said that the arrest was not related to April Kauffman’s death but other crimes at the time, the Press reported.
In 2013, James Kauffman filed a lawsuit against a life insurance company to receive a payout for his wife, but the company said it could not give him the money until it verified that he wasn’t involved in her death, according to the Press of Atlantic City. is wife’s daughter, Kim Pack, a beneficiary of the plan, claimed publicly that she believed Kauffman was responsible for her mother’s murder, and filed her own lawsuit in court to claim the insurance, the Press reported. e doctor had remarried by 2014, the newspaper said.
Pack, April Kauffman’s daughter from a previous relationship, spoke to reporters Tuesday.
I have been waiting patiently for justice and today I was lucky enough to be granted justice,” she told reporters in a video published by ABC. think for the first time today I can actually breathe. For the past five and a half years, I feel like I’ve been holding my breath on a daily basis.
The condemned are Ujer Ahmed Chowdhury, 63, and Nesar Ali, 75, while Yunus Ahmed, 71, Samsul Hossain Tarafder, 65, and Mobarak Mia, 66, were awarded imprisonment until death.
Of them, Yunus and Ujer are in jail while the rest are on the run.
The three-member tribunal led by Justice Md Shahinur Islam pronounced the verdict. It said the condemned will have to be executed by hanging.
Meanwhile, the tribunal also directed the secretary of home affairs and inspector general of police (IGP) to take steps to arrest the three fugitives convicted of war crimes.
The prosecutors pressed five charges against the accused on May 26 last year. The charges include abducting, torturing and killing one Danu Mia; looting and torching three houses; confining three people; abducting, confining and torturing another three and looting and torching houses of one Harendra Bhattacharya between November 22 and December 5.
The remaining charges are abducting and torturing four people and killing two between November 29 and December 8; and an act of genocide through killing 14 Hindus on December 29.
The case proceedings ended on November 20 last year after the prosecution and defence completed their closing arguments.