Washington: A Pakistani Army Major had been in telephonic contact with Faisal Shahzad, who allegedly attempted to bomb Times Square in New York, including the possibility that they spoke shortly before the failed bombing.
Pakistani and US investigators cited growing evidence on Saturday that the major had cellphone contact with Shahzad just before the attempted bombing.
US officials said they were aware of cellphone traffic between Shahzad and the unidentified Pakistani military officer, bolstering reports days earlier from Pakistani law enforcement sources, the Los Angeles Times reports.
A Pakistani law enforcement source said the major had cellphone contact with Shahzad on May 01, the day of the botched bombing, including a conversation that occurred as the Pakistani American was allegedly parking his SUV rigged with propane tanks, fertilizer and fireworks.
Investigators are keenly interested in the Pakistani Army major’s role in the failed bombing because he had more than one cellphone conversation with Shahzad from the time the suspect allegedly loaded his Nissan Pathfinder with bomb components to the moment he parked the vehicle and walked away, said the Pakistani source.
US officials said they could not confirm that timing of the conversations between Shahzad and the major.
US investigators have limited information about the major, who is in custody in Pakistan, and are negotiating with the Pakistani Government to interrogate him, they said.
The Pakistani source said the sequence of phone calls suggests that the Army major was aware of the plan Shahzad is accused of trying to carry out.
Investigators know of at least one meeting between the major and Shahzad in Pakistan`s capital, Islamabad, sometime in 2009, the Pakistani source said.