Mon, Oct 24, 2016 | updated 05:47 PM IST

New York bombing suspect an Afghan-born US citizen

Updated: Sep 20, 2016 09:21 IST

New York [USA], Sept. 20 (ANI): The suspect in Saturday's bombings in New York and New Jersey has been identified as an Afghanistan born naturalized U.S. citizen Ahmad Khan Rahami (28), who was captured on Monday.

He has been charged with five counts of attempted murder of a law enforcement officer after a shootout on Monday with police in Linden, New Jersey, reports the CNN.

Union County Prosecutor Grace H. Park said, he is also charged with second-degree unlawful possession of a weapon and second-degree possession of a weapon for an unlawful purpose.

Authorities said Rahami is "directly linked" to the bombings on Saturday in New York City and Seaside Park, New Jersey, and is believed to be connected to pipe bombs found Sunday night in Elizabeth, New Jersey.

"We have every reason to believe this was an act of terror," New York Mayor Bill de Blasio said Monday.

Investigation is underway to determine if Rahami had help.

Though FBI Assistant Director William F. Sweeney Jr., said there is "no indication" of an active operating cell in the New York area, evidence suggests Rahami was not acting alone.

Rahami first came to the United States in 1995 as a child, after his father arrived seeking asylum, and became a naturalized US citizen in 2011.

Officials said he had earlier travelled for extended periods to Afghanistan and Pakistan in the last five years and married a Pakistani woman in 2011 while he was in Pakistan.

Mayor Chris Bollwage said his family, who runs First American Fried Chicken in Elizabeth, has a history of clashes with the community over the restaurant, which used to be open 24 hours a day.

In 2011, the family sued the city of Elizabeth, and its police department, alleging discrimination and harassment against Muslims stemming from disputes over the restaurant's hours. (ANI)