When Judge Richard Sullivan asked failed alleged suicide bomber Akayed Ullah for his plea, the suspect replied, "At this moment, not guilty".
Ullah's arraignment fell shortly after a grand jury indicted him Wednesday on charges that align with the complaint brought against him one day after the bombing: supporting a foreign terrorist organization, using a weapon of mass destruction, bombing a place of public use, destroying public property and using a destructive device in a crime of violence. "Ullah's alleged plot failed", U.S. Attorney Geoffrey S. Berman of the Southern District of NY said in a statement, referring to the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, or Daesh.
"In selecting this time and place, Ullah's alleged objective in the Port Authority bombing was painfully clear: to inflict as much damage as possible, and to strike fear into the hearts of New Yorkers in the name of ISIS. Ullah's alleged plot failed, and he is now charged with federal terrorism offenses and facing life behind bars".
The bearded Ullah was the only person seriously hurt when the bomb went off December 11 in a corridor linking the subway to Manhattan's Port Authority bus terminal.
Ullah suffered lacerations and burns to his hand and stomach in the bombing, authorities said. Only he was seriously injured. He is seen in a 2015 photo, when he was a licensed TLC driver.
Prosecutors say Ullah admitted as much in an interview with law enforcement at the hospital.
The 27-year-old stands charged with providing material support to a terrorist organization and other counts in the December 11 attack.
"Thank God the perpetrator did not achieve his ultimate goals", de Blasio said following the incident.
Assistant U.S. Attorney George Turner said evidence Ullah will face at a trial likely to last only a week or two includes surveillance video of him detonating the bomb, along with photographs of bomb components on him and elsewhere. Ullah "is a lawful permanent resident" who entered the country in 2011 using a "passport displaying an F43 family immigrant visa", Houlton said in a statement.