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Published On: Thu, Dec 20th, 2012

Raees Alam Qazi and brother Sheheryar Alam Qazi, arrested in Christmas terrorist plot to avenge drone attacks

A Pakistani-born man wanted to avenge the deaths of U.S. drone attacks in Afghanistan by blowing up a New York City landmark but lacked the money and materials to carry out the plan, a federal prosecutor said Tuesday.

Raees Alam Qazi, age 20,  was researching bomb-making techniques on Internet sites affiliated with al Qaeda, including one using Christmas tree lights, and the FBI recorded phone calls and conversations linking Qazi to a purported “lone wolf” plot, said Assistant U.S. Attorney Karen Gilbert said at the bail hearing.

“He fully intended to do this, and thankfully he didn’t have enough money,” Gilbert said. Referring to casualties in U.S. drone attacks, she added: “He wants to avenge those deaths and kill people.”

Qazi traveled to New York last month in hopes of getting a job to fund his terrorist plans.

Qazi is charged along with his brother, 30-year-old taxi driver Sheheryar Alam Qazi, with conspiring to provide material support to terrorists and with attempting to use a weapon of mass destruction in the U.S. Both have pleaded not guilty to the charges, which carry a potential life sentence if the men are convicted of both counts.

U.S. Magistrate Judge William Matthewman ordered Raees Qazi held without bail until trial, finding that he is a danger to the community and a flight risk. His older brother has already agreed to pretrial detention, but may seek bail later. A trial is likely many months away.

Sheheryar Alam Qazi and Raees Alam Qazi

Sheheryar Alam Qazi and Raees Alam Qazi

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About the Author

- Writer and Co-Founder of The Global Dispatch, Brandon has been covering news, offering commentary for years, beginning professionally in 2003 on Crazed Fanboy before expanding into other blogs and sites. Appearing on several radio shows, Brandon has hosted Dispatch Radio, written his first novel (The Rise of the Templar) and completed the three years Global University program in Ministerial Studies to be a pastor. To Contact Brandon email [email protected] ATTN: BRANDON

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