Virginia man arrested for plotting to bomb Washington DC metro

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Map of the Washington DC Metro
Image: cburnett.

A Virginia man and Afghan national, Awais Younis, was arrested and charged on December 6 for making threatening communications and is currently being subjected to a mental evaluation which was ordered by a Judge during a hearing on December 9. Younis allegedly revealed his plans on the social networking site Facebook and is scheduled for a second hearing on December 21. The unsealed court documents came to the attention of news media today.

Federal authorities said that Younis told the FBI's witness on Facebook how to construct a pipe bomb and "what type of shrapnel would cause the greatest amount of damage". The FBI arrested Younis after an informant alerted them about his plans.

According to an FBI statement Younis said that he could hide a pipe bomb under a sewer head in Georgetown and place pipe bombs under the third and fifth metro cars, which contain "the highest number of commuters on them", without being noticed. However, spokesman for the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Eastern District of Virginia, Peter Carr, assured the public that there is no danger, "The public should be reassured that activities prior to his [Younis'] arrest were carefully monitored and that there is no threat against Metrorail or the general public in the Washington, D.C., area"

Younis is also known as Sundullah Ghilzai and Mohhanmed Khan and is either 25 or 26 years old.