February 23, 2010 2:32:00 pm
The Afghan immigrant who pleaded guilty to plotting a suicide bomb attack on New York City subways with al Qaeda training did so after federal investigators threatened to jail his mother for an immigration offense,a law enforcement official said on Monday.
Najibullah Zazi,25,admitted to planning what would have been the most serious attack on the United States since September 11,2001,once authorities pressured him with information that his mother was discovered to have falsely claimed she was the mother of someone else seeking a U.S. visa,the source said.
They told Zazi they were going to lock up his mother. Thats when he decided to cooperate, said the source,who is familiar with the investigation and spoke on condition of anonymity.
She swore that she was the mother of someone in an immigration process when she wasnt. Its not a heavy charge but its enough to get you jail time. Zazi reached a plea agreement with prosecutors on Monday — an indication he was cooperating with them. He may also have been attempting to seek lighter prosecution for his father,who was charged with lying to investigators to protect his son. But ultimately it was the threat against his mother that flipped him.
This was five months of work and it all came to together in the last three weeks. At the end of the day he didnt want is parents to go to jail, the source said.
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