Terrorism charges filed against Manhattan truck attack suspect Sayfullo Saipov
US prosecutors have charged 29-year-old Uzbek immigrant Sayfullo Saipov for killing at least eight people by mowing them down in a pickup truck in New York. Saipov has also been accused of providing ISIS with material support and resources. Police shot and injured Saipov at the scene of the attack, following which, he was treated in hospital. Prosecutors said he spoke to them freely.
What did Saipov tell prosecutors?
According to federal court documents, Saipov said he planned the attack two months ago. He said Halloween was intentionally chosen by him as the streets would be more crowded. He wanted to display ISIS flags on his truck but felt it better not to attract attention to himself. Investigators found 90 ISIS propaganda videos from his phone. Saipov said the videos inspired him.
Saipov conducted attack exactly as per ISIS instructions online
"He appears to have followed almost exactly to a 'T' the instructions that Isis has put out in its social media channels before, with instructions to their followers on how to carry out such an attack," said New York Police's Deputy Commissioner John Miller.
Who is Saipov?
Saipov reportedly arrived in the US from Uzbekistan in 2010 and is a green card holder. He reportedly lived in Tampa, Florida, and then moved to Paterson, New Jersey. Uber has confirmed that he worked for them as a driver. Reportedly, Saipov has a wife and three children. A US-based Uzbek religious activist who knew Saipov said the suspect was radicalized online.
Saipov's name came up during FBI counter-terrorism investigation
An intelligence source told CBS News that US authorities knew of Saipov after his name was associated with individuals subject to FBI counter-terrorism investigations in 2015. Saipov allegedly had contact with people considered radical extremists, of whom, at least one was Uzbek. Saipov wasn't the main focus of the investigation. It remains unclear whether he had been interviewed by the FBI.
Security increased at NYC, Trump wants Saipov locked at Guantanamo
There's been an increased police presence at key transport hubs in New York. Additional uniformed and plain-clothes police will be deployed at Sunday's New York Marathon. Meanwhile, US President Donald Trump said he'd consider sending Saipov to the controversial US prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. He said the US should give these "animals"(terrorists) should get "far quicker and far greater" punishment than they do.