Sayfullo Saipov, 29, of Paterson, was charged in Manhattan federal court with providing material support to the Islamic State group, along with eight counts of murder and 12 counts of attempted murder in aid of racketeering.
The man accused of killing eight people in a Lower Manhattan terrorist attack has been charged in a 22-count indictment, officials said Tuesday.
Saipov was arrested immediately after the October 31 attack in which he ploughed a truck down a New York City bike lane and has been in federal custody.
If convicted on the murder and vehicle destruction charges, he would face a maximum penalty of life in prison or death, prosecutors said.
Prosecutors had initially announced only two charges: provision of material support and resources to a foreign terrorist organization, and violence and destruction of motor vehicles.
Saipov wanted to display ISIS flags in the front and back of the truck during the attack, but decided against it because he did not want to draw attention to himself, the indictment states. He rented the truck a week earlier so he could practice making turns then drove it down a crowded bikeway along the West Side Highway before he collided with a school bus.
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An intelligence source told CBS News' Pat Milton that Saipov was on authorities' radar before the attack.
The attack ended when police shot Saipov in the abdomen.
The indictment treats the Islamic State, in whose name Saipov told police he carried out the attack, like a mafia family. First, the US attorney must make a formal recommendation that they would like to seek the death penalty in the case, then that recommendation would have to be approved by the attorney general.
New York City attack suspect Sayfullo Habibullaevic Saipov shown in court Wed., Nov. 1, 2017. One of the phones was filled with almost 90 ISIS propaganda videos, the feds have said.
The October 31 attack was the worst in the U.S. financial capital since the September 11, 2001 Al-Qaeda hijackings that brought down the Twin Towers.