United States

Chelsea Bomber Trying to Radicalize Other Inmates: Feds

The allegations came in a letter Friday from the office of Acting U.S. Attorney Joon Kim to Judge Richard Berman

What to Know

  • Chelsea bomber Ahmad Khan Rahimi was sharing radical material with other inmates while awaiting sentencing, prosecutors say
  • The government says he gave the materials to other inmates during Friday prayer sessions
  • Rahimi has been in a Manhattan jail since being convicted in October; he will be sentenced in January

The man who was convicted of setting off a bomb in Manhattan that injured 30 people last year has been attempting to radicalize fellow jail inmates, federal prosecutors said. 

The government says Ahmad Khan Rahimi gave other inmates access to speeches by Osama bin Laden and Anwar al-Awlaki and materials including bomb-making instructions since October, while awaiting sentencing at the Metropolitan Correction Center in Manhattan. 

The allegations came in a letter Friday from the office of Acting U.S. Attorney Joon Kim to Judge Richard Berman. 

"The defendant allowed the inmates to view these materials on his laptop, and also provided some of them with electronic copies," prosecutors wrote.

Prosecutors said they had recovered the copies from two inmates' electronics.

The inmates Rahimi shared the materials with included Sajmir Alimehmeti, a Bronx man who has been charged with providing material support to the Islamic State, according to prosecutors. 

Rahimi's electronic devices were given to him as pre-trial discovery materials. Prosecutors said they had also found indications he'd been trying to connect with other terrorism suspects.

"After learning of the defendant's radicalization efforts, the MCC staff searched his personal property and located, among other things, an address book containing the names and inmate numbers of other defendants charged with terrorism offenses," prosecutors wrote.

Judge Berman is to sentence Rahimi on Jan. 18 after a jury convicted him in October of all the charges against him. 

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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