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NYC man pleads guilty to state terrorism charge

NEW YORK – A New York City man admitted on Wednesday building improvised explosive devices to detonate in Manhattan, intending to target United States military personnel and civilians was entered in New York City.   The guilty plea from Jose Pimentel, a/k/a “Muhammad Yousuf,” a/k/a “Yusuf,” 29, was the result of a year-long investigation by the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office’s Investigation Division and the New York City Police Department. Pimentel pleaded guilty in New York State Supreme Court to Attempted Criminal Possession of a Weapon in the First Degree as a Crime of Terrorism, and is expected to be sentenced on March 25, 2014.

“Manhattan continues to be the symbol of much that terrorists hate about the United States, so we remain a principal world target for terrorist attacks, both at home and from abroad,” Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance, Jr., said.   “In the wake of September 11, 2001, New York lawmakers passed a state anti-terror law, designating as a crime of terrorism any crime of violence, or any criminal conspiracy to commit a crime of violence, that is committed with intent to intimidate or coerce a civilian population. In December 2012, my Office secured the first conviction under this law against a terrorist, defendant Ahmed Ferhani. Today, defendant Jose Pimentel admitted to planning a terrorist attack using a pipe bomb. His violent ideology, and his plan to implement that ideology, came in least in part from Inspire Magazine, an Al Qaeda playbook.

As admitted by the defendant in his guilty plea and according to documents filed in court, in October and November 2011, JOSE Pimentel collected components to build pipe bombs. Following a year-long investigation, Pimentel was arrested on November 19, 2011, by the NYPD Bomb Squad. The defendant had pipes with drilled holes; incendiary powder; electronic circuits that would have been used as ignition devices; clocks; and nails that would have been used to as shrapnel upon explosion. Each of the components seized was proscribed in a step-by-step guide in Al Qaeda’s Inspire Magazine on how to make a bomb designed to maximize casualties.

Pimentel also maintained his own website that contained links to bomb-making recipes. His website strongly advocated violence against United States citizens and government agencies, including police stations, political facilities, embassies, and airports.