NBC News reports that the suspected bomber in a NYC subway blast today has claimed he was avenging Muslim deaths around the world in the name of ISIS. Akayed Ullah, 27, is an immigrant from Bangladesh and built a crude bomb after watching online tutorials in his Brooklyn apartment.
Officials state there is no direct evidence that Ullah is connected to ISIS, but rather his anger at U.S. bombings in ISIS territories drove him to attempt a suicide bombing.
The bomb was made of zip ties, a pipe, matches, Christmas lights and a 9-volt battery. However, the bomb didn’t detonate as planned, and Ullah ended up injured and was taken to Bellevue Hospital. Officials immediately visited three residences in Brooklyn with ties to Ullah.
His family released a statement via the Council on American-Islamic Relations saying they were sorry for what happened today and the allegations against Ullah. They also stated they were outraged by law enforcement officers questioning young children and minors, without a lawyer and some without parents present.
Ullah immigrated to the U.S. in 2011 and is now a green card holder and permanent resident. He most recently was employed as an electrician, but was formerly working as a taxi driver in the city for three years.
NBC also states that though Ullah had traveled abroad several times since moving to the states, there were no red flags in his past other than multiple traffic tickets.
Ullah’s former neighbor expressed shock at the fact that he was a suspect and had been detained, saying he was very quiet and deeply religious. Another former neighbor said he lived next to her with an older couple and two other men, and he would frequently leave the house with what looked like camera equipment.
Another relative of Ullah was contacted by NBC and had not been made aware of the situation. He declined to comment.
*Image is from Akayed Ullah’s TLC For-Hire Vehicle (FHV) driver’s license.