The New York Police Department arrested two men late last night for planning a terrorist attack in the city. They were allegedly trying to buy guns and hand grenades and got busted in a sting operation, the New York Times reports. There's not a lot of information available on the arrests yet. A police official "characterized the suspects as 'homegrown' and another said one of the young men was of Moroccan descent." Their identities haven't been released and they haven't been arraigned.
The most unique detail about the case so far is that New York police made the arrests and New York District Attorney Cyrus Vance is leading the prosecution. Normally the Federal Bureau of Investigation takes the lead in terrorist investigations and the United States Attorney's Office prosecutes. In this case, "one official had told the F.B.I. it was not a terrorism case," The Times reported. The department's Intelligence Division made the arrest and the D.A. is prosecuting under state terrorism laws.
The story apparently broke too late to make headlines in either of the city's major tabloids, the New York Post and the New York Daily News, but the Post carried another small story today that might be tangentially related to the terrorism arrests. Apparently, the second-in-command of the Joint Terrorism Task Force was removed from his post this week after he refused to take some FBI files on Osama bin Laden from the bureau's office on an order from his supervisor. Are we seeing tension between the New York Police Department and the FBI? Please start speculating now.
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.