The family of Akayed Ullah — the suspect in the Port Authority explosion, which injured four, including the suspect — on Monday said that they were not happy with the way law enforcement handled the investigation surrounding their relative.
What are the details of the Port Authority incident?
Ullah, a Bangladesh immigrant who lived in Brooklyn, partially detonated an "improvised low-tech explosive device" strapped to his body near a Port Authority bus terminal. Law enforcement reported that Ullah intended to completely detonate the device in a crowded passageway.
NYPD Commissioner James O’Neill was asked during a Monday news conference whether the suspect had any ties to the Islamic State. O'Neill admitted that Ullah "did make statements," but declined to elaborate at the time.
However, former NYPD Commissioner Bill Bratton told MSNBC that the attack was ISIS-inspired, and the New York Daily News reported that Ullah told authorities that he attempted to execute the attack in retaliation for recent Israeli actions in Gaza.
Bratton said that Ullah “was supposedly setting the device off in the name of ISIS.”
Ullah on Tuesday was charged with a variety of offenses, including criminal possession of a weapon, support act of terrorism, and making a terroristic threat.
Federal charges, later announced, included providing material support to a foreign terrorist organization, using a weapon of mass destruction, and bombing a public place.
What did Ullah's family say?
In a statement provided to the New York Chapter Council for Islamic Relations, the family expressed their heartbreak and outrage.
"We are heartbroken by the violence that was targeted at our city today and by the allegations being made against a member of our family," a statement from the family read via Albert Fox Cahn, the legal director for the N.Y. Chapter Council for Islamic Relations.
The statement continued, "But we’re also outraged by the behavior of the law enforcement officials who held children as small as 4 years old out in the cold and who pulled a teenager out of high school classes to interrogate him without lawyer, without his parents."
"These are not the sorts of actions we expect from our justice system," the statement added, and noted that the family has "every confidence" that the U.S. justice system would "find the truth behind this attack and that we will, in the end, be able to learn what occurred."