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The arrest of Faisal Shahzad; criminal complaint added; the DOJ’s big white lie

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By Michelle Malkin  •  May 4, 2010 08:55 AM

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The Pakistani-born naturalized American who bought the would-be Nissan Pathfinder SUV bomb that fizzled in Times Square was arrested at JFK airport as he attempted to flee for Dubai.

Here’s the DOJ statement:

Earlier this evening, Faisal Shahzad was arrested in connection with the attempted car bombing in New York on Saturday. Mr. Shahzad, an American citizen, was taken into custody at JFK Airport in New York as he attempted to board a flight to Dubai.

Since this plot was first uncovered on Saturday night, the FBI, prosecutors and intelligence lawyers in the National Security Division of the Justice Department and the U.S. Attorneys Offices in Manhattan and Connecticut, along with the NYPD have worked night and day to find out who was responsible for what would have been a deadly attack had it been successful. Over the course of the day today, we have gathered significant additional evidence that led to tonight’s arrest, which was made by agents from Department of Homeland Security’s Customs and Border Protection.

This investigation is ongoing, as are our attempts to gather useful intelligence, and we continue to pursue a number of leads. But it’s clear that the intent behind this terrorist act was to kill Americans.

FBI agents are working with their state and local counterparts in New York, Connecticut and other jurisdictions to gather evidence and intelligence related to this case. We are also coordinating with other members of the President’s national security team to ensure we use every resource available to the United States to bring anyone responsible to justice.

We continue to gather leads in this investigation, and it’s important that the American people remain vigilant. The vehicle in Times Square was first noticed on Saturday by a citizen who reported it to authorities, and, as always, any American who notices suspicious activity should report it to the appropriate law enforcement agencies.

This investigation is ongoing, it is multi-faceted, and it is aggressive. As we move forward, we will focus on not just holding those responsible for it accountable, but also on obtaining any intelligence about terrorist organizations overseas.

Because of the fast-moving nature of this investigation, I am not able to make any further information public at this time. But the American people should know that we are deploying every resource available, and we will not rest until we have brought everyone responsible to justice.

Mark Steyn rips the Lone Wolf knee-jerkers.

Confirmed: Michael Bloomberg is a moron.

ABC News on the clues that led to Shahzad:

Officials declined to provide the specifics that led them to believe there were overseas links to a larger plot.

Authorities said another clue in the investigation is a video posted online early Sunday morning by persons in Connecticut, who may have been involved in the bomb attempt and are being sought by law enforcement. The video, posted on a site registered one day before the attack, has the Taliban in Pakistan claiming responsibility for the attempted bombing.

Surveillance was key.

The number from a disposable cellphone led FBI agents to the suspect arrested Monday night for allegedly driving a car bomb into Times Square on Saturday evening, according to a senior official.

“They were able to basically get one phone number and by running it through a number of databases, figure out who they thought the guy was,” the official said.

A huge law-enforcement force tracked the suspect through the afternoon and evening. He was arrested at 11:30 p.m. at John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York City. The vehicle identification number had been removed from the bomb-laden 1993 Nissan Pathfinder left in Times Square.

But investigators were able to lift it from a second location on the vehicle, and used that to track down a Connecticut man who said he had sold the Pathfinder for cash about three weeks ago. The man had offered the vehicle on Craigslist, and FBI agents were able to recover the number from a disposable cellphone that had been used by the buyer.

The suspect didn’t still have the phone. But using a lot of technology and access to database, agents located the suspect.

CAIR and the ACLU were unavailable for comment…

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NYPost has a photo of Shahzad.

WSJ reports three were removed from Dubai-bound flight that Shahzad attempted to board.

Newsweek on another link:

A prominent expert on Jihadist media says there is an apparent link between the new video message in which Pakistani Taliban leader Hakimullah Mehsud, once thought to have been killed, proclaims he is still alive, and a message posted overnight Saturday in which the Pakistani Taliban appears to claim credit for the failed Times Square car bomb attack.

Rita Katz, founder of the Site Intelligence Group, a private organization that monitors and translates extremist Web postings, late on Monday outlined a timeline her organization put together that suggests that the Hakimullah video and the U.S. attack claim were both posted, at least on some sites, by the same person or persons.

Report: Pakistan arrests man in Karachi in connection with Times Square bomb attempt.

Report: Shahzad attended an overseas jihadi training camp.

Report: Up to eight arrested overseas.

This is the reported air traffic control audio of the Dubai-bound flight being turned back to the gate after taxiing…

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Update: Here’s a link to the criminal complaint filed this afternoon.

Fleshing out the DOJ’s big white lie from its press release this morning: “…as he attempted to board a flight to Dubai.” More on the no-fly debacle:

The no-fly list failed to keep the Times Square suspect off the plane. Faisal Shahzad had boarded a jetliner bound for the United Arab Emirates Monday night before federal authorities pulled him back.

The night’s events, gradually coming to light, underscored the flaws in the nation’s aviation security system, which despite its technologies, lists and information sharing, often comes down to someone making a right call.

As federal agents closed in, Faisal Shahzad was aboard Emirates Flight 202. He reserved a ticket on the way to John F. Kennedy International Airport, paid cash on arrival and walked through security without being stopped. By the time Customs and Border Protection officials spotted Shahzad’s name on the passenger list and recognized him as the bombing suspect they were looking for, he was in his seat and the plane was preparing to leave the gate.

But it didn’t. At the last minute, the pilot was notified, the jetliner’s door was opened and Shahzad was taken into custody.

After authorities pulled Shahzad off the plane, he admitted he was behind the crude Times Square car bomb, officials said. He also claimed to have been trained at a terror camp in Pakistan’s lawless tribal region of Waziristan, according to court documents. That raised increased concern that the bombing was an international terror plot.

…The Obama administration played down the fact that Shahzad, a U.S. citizen born in Pakistan, had made it aboard the plane. Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano wouldn’t talk about it, other than to say Customs officials prevented the plane from taking off. White House spokesman Robert Gibbs said the security system has fallback procedures in place for times like this, and they worked.

And Attorney General Eric Holder said he “was never in any fear that we were in danger of losing him.”

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