Accused NY subway bomber pleads not guilty to terrorism charges

NEW YORK (Reuters) - The Bangladeshi man accused of attempting an Islamic State-inspired suicide bomb attack on a busy New York City commuter hub in December pleaded not guilty on Thursday to federal terrorism charges.

"At this moment, not guilty," said Akayed Ullah, 27, when U.S. District Judge Richard Sullivan asked him for his plea at a hearing in federal court in Manhattan.

The charges against Ullah include supporting a foreign terrorist organization, using a weapon of mass destruction and carrying out a terrorist attack against a mass transit system. Ullah faces life in prison if convicted.

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NEW YORK, USA - DECEMBER 11 : A New York Police Department (NYPD) officer chats with citizens after blocking a road with 'Do Not Cross' tapes after an explosion occured at the Port Authority Bus Terminal in New York, United States on December 11, 2017. (Photo by Ertugrul Cingil/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, USA - DECEMBER 11 : A New York Police Department (NYPD) officer allows a girl through 'Do Not Cross' taped street after an explosion occured at the Port Authority Bus Terminal in New York, United States on December 11, 2017. (Photo by Ertugrul Cingil/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, USA - DECEMBER 11 : New York Police Department (NYPD) officers take security measures after an explosion occured in New York, United States on December 11, 2017. (Photo by Ertugrul Cingil/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, USA - DECEMBER 11 : A New York Police Department (NYPD) officer chats with a girl after blocking a road with 'Do Not Cross' tapes after an explosion occured at the Port Authority Bus Terminal in New York, United States on December 11, 2017. (Photo by Ertugrul Cingil/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, USA - DECEMBER 11 : New York Police Department (NYPD) officers take security measures after an explosion occured in New York, United States on December 11, 2017. (Photo by Ertugrul Cingil/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, USA - DECEMBER 11 : New York Police Department (NYPD) officers take security measures after an explosion occured in New York, United States on December 11, 2017. (Photo by Ertugrul Cingil/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, USA - DECEMBER 11 : New York Police Department (NYPD) officers take security measures after an explosion occured in New York, United States on December 11, 2017. (Photo by Ertugrul Cingil/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, USA - DECEMBER 11 : New York Police Department (NYPD) officers take security measures after an explosion occured in New York, United States on December 11, 2017. (Photo by Ertugrul Cingil/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, USA - DECEMBER 11 : New York Police Department (NYPD) officers take security measures after an explosion occured in New York, United States on December 11, 2017. (Photo by Ertugrul Cingil/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
FBI and police respond to a reported explosion at the Port Authority Bus Terminal on December 11, 2017 in New York. New York police said Monday that they were investigating an explosion of 'unknown origin' in busy downtown Manhattan, and that people were being evacuated. Media reports said at least one person had been detained after the blast near the Port Authority transit terminal, close to Times Square.Early media reports said the blast came from a pipe bomb, and that several people were injured. / AFP PHOTO / Bryan R. Smith (Photo credit should read BRYAN R. SMITH/AFP/Getty Images)
FBI and police respond to a reported explosion at the Port Authority Bus Terminal on December 11, 2017 in New York. New York police said Monday that they were investigating an explosion of 'unknown origin' in busy downtown Manhattan, and that people were being evacuated. Media reports said at least one person had been detained after the blast near the Port Authority transit terminal, close to Times Square.Early media reports said the blast came from a pipe bomb, and that several people were injured. / AFP PHOTO / Bryan R. Smith (Photo credit should read BRYAN R. SMITH/AFP/Getty Images)
Police respond to a reported explosion at the Port Authority Bus Terminal on December 11, 2017 in New York. New York police said Monday that they were investigating an explosion of 'unknown origin' in busy downtown Manhattan, and that people were being evacuated. Media reports said at least one person had been detained after the blast near the Port Authority transit terminal, close to Times Square.Early media reports said the blast came from a pipe bomb, and that several people were injured. / AFP PHOTO / Bryan R. Smith (Photo credit should read BRYAN R. SMITH/AFP/Getty Images)
A fire truck arrives after a reported explosion at the Port Authority Bus Terminal on December 11, 2017 in New York. New York police said Monday that they were investigating an explosion of 'unknown origin' in busy downtown Manhattan, and that people were being evacuated. Media reports said at least one person had been detained after the blast near the Port Authority transit terminal, close to Times Square.Early media reports said the blast came from a pipe bomb, and that several people were injured. / AFP PHOTO / Bryan R. Smith (Photo credit should read BRYAN R. SMITH/AFP/Getty Images)
Police and other first responders respond to a reported explosion at the Port Authority Bus Terminal on December 11, 2017 in New York. New York police said Monday that they were investigating an explosion of 'unknown origin' in busy downtown Manhattan, and that people were being evacuated. Media reports said at least one person had been detained after the blast near the Port Authority transit terminal, close to Times Square.Early media reports said the blast came from a pipe bomb, and that several people were injured. / AFP PHOTO / Bryan R. Smith (Photo credit should read BRYAN R. SMITH/AFP/Getty Images)
Police and other first responders respond to a reported explosion at the Port Authority Bus Terminal on December 11, 2017 in New York. New York police said Monday that they were investigating an explosion of 'unknown origin' in busy downtown Manhattan, and that people were being evacuated. Media reports said at least one person had been detained after the blast near the Port Authority transit terminal, close to Times Square.Early media reports said the blast came from a pipe bomb, and that several people were injured. / AFP PHOTO / Bryan R. Smith (Photo credit should read BRYAN R. SMITH/AFP/Getty Images)
A fire truck arrives after a reported explosion at the Port Authority Bus Terminal on December 11, 2017 in New York. New York police said Monday that they were investigating an explosion of 'unknown origin' in busy downtown Manhattan, and that people were being evacuated. Media reports said at least one person had been detained after the blast near the Port Authority transit terminal, close to Times Square.Early media reports said the blast came from a pipe bomb, and that several people were injured. / AFP PHOTO / Bryan R. Smith (Photo credit should read BRYAN R. SMITH/AFP/Getty Images)
Police and other first responders respond to a reported explosion at the Port Authority Bus Terminal on December 11, 2017 in New York. New York police said Monday that they were investigating an explosion of 'unknown origin' in busy downtown Manhattan, and that people were being evacuated. Media reports said at least one person had been detained after the blast near the Port Authority transit terminal, close to Times Square.Early media reports said the blast came from a pipe bomb, and that several people were injured. / AFP PHOTO / Bryan R. Smith (Photo credit should read BRYAN R. SMITH/AFP/Getty Images)
Police and other first responders respond to a reported explosion at the Port Authority Bus Terminal on December 11, 2017 in New York. New York police said Monday that they were investigating an explosion of 'unknown origin' in busy downtown Manhattan, and that people were being evacuated. Media reports said at least one person had been detained after the blast near the Port Authority transit terminal, close to Times Square.Early media reports said the blast came from a pipe bomb, and that several people were injured. / AFP PHOTO / Bryan R. Smith (Photo credit should read BRYAN R. SMITH/AFP/Getty Images)
Police and other first responders respond to a reported explosion at the Port Authority Bus Terminal on December 11, 2017 in New York. New York police said Monday that they were investigating an explosion of 'unknown origin' in busy downtown Manhattan, and that people were being evacuated. Media reports said at least one person had been detained after the blast near the Port Authority transit terminal, close to Times Square.Early media reports said the blast came from a pipe bomb, and that several people were injured. / AFP PHOTO / Bryan R. Smith (Photo credit should read BRYAN R. SMITH/AFP/Getty Images)
Port Authority Police watch as people evacuate after a reported explosion at the Port Authority Bus Terminal on December 11, 2017 in New York. New York police said Monday that they were investigating an explosion of 'unknown origin' in busy downtown Manhattan, and that people were being evacuated. Media reports said at least one person had been detained after the blast near the Port Authority transit terminal, close to Times Square.Early media reports said the blast came from a pipe bomb, and that several people were injured. / AFP PHOTO / Bryan R. Smith (Photo credit should read BRYAN R. SMITH/AFP/Getty Images)
Police and other first responders respond to a reported explosion at the Port Authority Bus Terminal on December 11, 2017 in New York. New York police said Monday that they were investigating an explosion of 'unknown origin' in busy downtown Manhattan, and that people were being evacuated. Media reports said at least one person had been detained after the blast near the Port Authority transit terminal, close to Times Square.Early media reports said the blast came from a pipe bomb, and that several people were injured. / AFP PHOTO / Bryan R. Smith (Photo credit should read BRYAN R. SMITH/AFP/Getty Images)
Port Authority Police watch as people evacuate after a reported explosion at the Port Authority Bus Terminal on December 11, 2017 in New York. New York police said Monday that they were investigating an explosion of 'unknown origin' in busy downtown Manhattan, and that people were being evacuated. Media reports said at least one person had been detained after the blast near the Port Authority transit terminal, close to Times Square.Early media reports said the blast came from a pipe bomb, and that several people were injured. / AFP PHOTO / Bryan R. Smith (Photo credit should read BRYAN R. SMITH/AFP/Getty Images)
Port Authority Police watch as people evacuate after a reported explosion at the Port Authority Bus Terminal on December 11, 2017 in New York. New York police said Monday that they were investigating an explosion of 'unknown origin' in busy downtown Manhattan, and that people were being evacuated. Media reports said at least one person had been detained after the blast near the Port Authority transit terminal, close to Times Square.Early media reports said the blast came from a pipe bomb, and that several people were injured. / AFP PHOTO / Bryan R. Smith (Photo credit should read BRYAN R. SMITH/AFP/Getty Images)
Port Authority Police watch as people evacuate after a reported explosion at the Port Authority Bus Terminal on December 11, 2017 in New York. New York police said Monday that they were investigating an explosion of 'unknown origin' in busy downtown Manhattan, and that people were being evacuated. Media reports said at least one person had been detained after the blast near the Port Authority transit terminal, close to Times Square.Early media reports said the blast came from a pipe bomb, and that several people were injured. / AFP PHOTO / Bryan R. Smith (Photo credit should read BRYAN R. SMITH/AFP/Getty Images)
Port Authority Police watch as people evacuate after a reported explosion at the Port Authority Bus Terminal on December 11, 2017 in New York. New York police said Monday that they were investigating an explosion of 'unknown origin' in busy downtown Manhattan, and that people were being evacuated. Media reports said at least one person had been detained after the blast near the Port Authority transit terminal, close to Times Square.Early media reports said the blast came from a pipe bomb, and that several people were injured. / AFP PHOTO / Bryan R. Smith (Photo credit should read BRYAN R. SMITH/AFP/Getty Images)
Port Authority Police watch as people evacuate after a reported explosion at the Port Authority Bus Terminal on December 11, 2017 in New York. New York police said Monday that they were investigating an explosion of 'unknown origin' in busy downtown Manhattan, and that people were being evacuated. Media reports said at least one person had been detained after the blast near the Port Authority transit terminal, close to Times Square.Early media reports said the blast came from a pipe bomb, and that several people were injured. / AFP PHOTO / Bryan R. Smith (Photo credit should read BRYAN R. SMITH/AFP/Getty Images)
Port Authority Police watch as people evacuate after a reported explosion at the Port Authority Bus Terminal on December 11, 2017 in New York. New York police said Monday that they were investigating an explosion of 'unknown origin' in busy downtown Manhattan, and that people were being evacuated. Media reports said at least one person had been detained after the blast near the Port Authority transit terminal, close to Times Square.Early media reports said the blast came from a pipe bomb, and that several people were injured. / AFP PHOTO / Bryan R. Smith (Photo credit should read BRYAN R. SMITH/AFP/Getty Images)
Police and other first responders respond to a reported explosion at the Port Authority Bus Terminal on December 11, 2017 in New York. New York police said Monday that they were investigating an explosion of 'unknown origin' in busy downtown Manhattan, and that people were being evacuated. Media reports said at least one person had been detained after the blast near the Port Authority transit terminal, close to Times Square.Early media reports said the blast came from a pipe bomb, and that several people were injured. / AFP PHOTO / Bryan R. Smith (Photo credit should read BRYAN R. SMITH/AFP/Getty Images)
A police officers stand guard outside the New York Port Authority Bus Terminal after reports of an explosion in New York City, New York, U.S., December 11, 2017. REUTERS/Lucas Jackson
New York Police Department (NYPD) officers stand guard near Port Authority Bus Terminal after reports of an explosion in Manhattan, New York, U.S., December 11, 2017. REUTERS/Amr Alfiky
Police officers and FBI agents walk outside the New York Port Authority Bus Terminal in New York City, U.S. December 11, 2017 after reports of an explosion. REUTERS/Lucas Jackson
Police officers and an FBI agent stand outside the New York Port Authority in New York City, U.S. December 11, 2017 after reports of an explosion. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
New York mayor Billl de Blasio (R) looks on as New York governor Andrew Cuomo holds a press conference in the wake of an explosion at the Port Authority in New York City, U.S. December 11, 2017. REUTERS/Lucas Jackson
Police officers stand guard outside the New York Port Authority Bus Terminal in New York City, U.S. December 11, 2017 after reports of an explosion. REUTERS/Lucas Jackson TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
NEW YORK, USA - DECEMBER 11: New York Police Department (NYPD) officers take security measures after an explosion occured at the Port Authority Bus Terminal in New York, United States on December 11, 2017. (Photo by Mohammed Elshamy/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - DECEMBER 11: New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio speaks during a press briefing outside the New York Port Authority Bus Terminal, December 11, 2017 in New York City. The Police Department said that one person was in custody for an attempted terror attack after an explosion in a passageway linking the Port Authority Bus Terminal with the subway. (Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - DECEMBER 11: New York City Police Department officers and other first responders work the scene near the New York Port Authority Bus Terminal, December 11, 2017 in New York City. The Police Department said that one person was in custody for an attempted terror attack after an explosion in a passageway linking the Port Authority Bus Terminal with the subway. (Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images)
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Ullah was arrested on Dec. 11 after trying to detonate a pipe bomb secured to his body in a pedestrian tunnel in New York City's subway system, according to federal prosecutors. The tunnel is in a busy subway station in Manhattan's Times Square that is connected to the busy Port Authority Bus Terminal, which is used by commuters from New York's suburbs as well as out-of-town travelers.

Ullah was hospitalized for injuries suffered after the bomb ignited but failed to detonate as intended, while three other people suffered minor injuries, according to prosecutors.

Ullah told police officers after the blast that he "did it for the Islamic State," according to a criminal complaint filed on Dec. 13.

Prosecutors said that Ullah, who has lived in the United States since 2011, began his self-radicalization in 2014 when he started viewing pro-Islamic State materials online. Inside Ullah's passport, which was recovered from his home, was a handwritten note that read, “O AMERICA, DIE IN YOUR RAGE,” according to the complaint.

Monirul Islam, head of the Bangladesh police’s counterterrorism unit, told Reuters shortly after the attack in December that his country had found no evidence linking Ullah to militants in his home country.

Ullah's court-appointed lawyer, Amy Gallicchio, said at Thursday's hearing that Ullah, who is currently being held in Manhattan's Metropolitan Correctional Center, had not been seen by a doctor in days and asked the judge to order that he receive medical attention.

Sullivan told Gallicchio to direct her request to prison authorities first.

Related:

9 PHOTOS
What we know about NYC bike trail terror attack suspect Sayfullo Saipov
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What we know about NYC bike trail terror attack suspect Sayfullo Saipov

Sayfullo Saipov, is suspected of killing eight people and injuring several others by plowing a truck into cyclists and pedestrians on a bike path in New York City.

(St. Charles County Department of Corrections/Handout via REUTERS)

Sayfullo Saipov lived in an apartment in Paterson, New Jersey with his wife and three children, two girls and a boy.

(REUTERS/Ashlee Espinal)

He arrived in the United States from Uzbekistan in 2010.

(REUTERS/Muhammadsharif Mamatkulov)

Official said the suspect rented the truck used in the rampage from a Home Depot store in Passaic, New Jersey.  

(JEWEL SAMAD/AFP/Getty Images)

According to a criminal complaint Sayfullo Saipov said he 'felt good' about his crime and asked to display an ISIS flag in his hospital room.

(New York PD/Handout via REUTERS)

Saipov had began planning the attack a year ago and had originally planned to strike the Brooklyn Bridge too.

(REUTERS/Andrew Kelly)

The mosque that according to local media Sayfullo Saipov, the suspect in the New York City truck attack attended in Paterson, New Jersey.

(REUTERS/Ashlee Espinal)

Saipov reportedly drove for Uber and the company said he passed their background check process.

(Photo by Smith Collection/Gado/Getty Images)

Saipov's cellphone was reportedly filled with ISIS-related propaganda and videos.

(Dado Ruvic / Reuters)
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