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Pakistan makes Times Square-linked arrest

By the CNN Wire Staff

STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Pakistani officials detain 10th person accused of link to bomb plot
  • Shoaib Mughal was intermediary for bombing suspect, official says
  • Mughal owns and operates a computer parts store in Islamabad, his uncle says
  • Uncle says Mughal has never been outside Pakistan
RELATED TOPICS
  • Faisal Shahzad
  • Pakistan
  • Terrorism

Islamabad, Pakistan (CNN) -- Pakistani officials have detained a 10th person in connection with the investigation into the failed May 1 car bombing of New York's Times Square, a Pakistani intelligence source told CNN Tuesday.

The intelligence source, who asked not to be identified because he is not authorized to speak to the media, identified the man as Shoaib Mughal.

He is suspected of having served as an intermediary between the bombing suspect, Faisal Shahzad, and the Pakistani Taliban, the source said.

Mughal's uncle, who also asked not to be identified, told CNN that Mughal, who is married, owns and operates a computer parts store in Islamabad.

The uncle said six men dressed in civilian clothing detained Mughal, who has never been outside Pakistan, at his shop on May 6.

In addition, a Pakistani intelligence source told CNN that detainee Muhammad Shahid Hussain was a friend of Faisal Shahzad when the bombing suspect was studying in the United States.

The two men met frequently last year, when Shahzad returned to Pakistan, the source said.

Video: Pakistani Taliban plots against U.S.

Hussain's brother, Muhammad Khalid, told CNN that Hussain traveled to the United States in 2000 to participate in an MBA program and remained there until 2004.

Hussain's brother and father, Muhammad Ramzan, have denied he has any links to terrorist groups or the attempted bombing in Times Square.

The intelligence official added that another suspect, Major Adnan, resigned from the Pakistani Army last year. The official said Adnan contacted Shahzad by e-mail at least once but the official did not disclose when the e-mail was sent or what it contained.

This month, a senior administration official said Shahzad, a Pakistani-American, was looking for help from the Pakistani Taliban in carrying out a bomb attack during his last visit to Pakistan.

"The question is: Did he go there looking for help or did he fall in their lap? It seems the former. It appears he went seeking help for this attack," the official said. "He had an attack in mind when he went there."

The official spoke on the condition of anonymity because this person wasn't allowed to speak publicly about the investigation.

Top advisers to President Barack Obama said early this month that Shahzad worked with the Taliban movement in Pakistan.

"The evidence that we have now developed shows the Pakistani Taliban directed this plot," Attorney General Eric Holder told NBC's "Meet the Press" on May 9.

John Brennan, assistant to the president for counterterrorism and homeland security, told CNN that the Pakistani Taliban -- also known as Tehrik-e-Taliban, or TTP -- is "closely allied with al Qaeda."

Shahzad was arrested while trying to fly out of New York on May 3, two days after federal authorities say he left a vehicle filled with explosive materials in Manhattan's Times Square. The makeshift bomb failed to detonate.

Shahzad had traveled to Pakistan several times in recent years, Brennan said.

CNN's Reza Sayah and Nasir Habib contributed to this story.

 
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