Trump calls for New York attacker to face death penalty

The 29-year-old attacker told investigators he aimed to kill as many people as possible

Trump calls for New York attacker to face death penalty

US President Donald Trump speaks during a cabinet meeting at the White House in Washington, DC, 01-11-2017. Image: Sipa USA/SIPA USA/PA Images

The US President Donald Trump has called for a man charged with the truck terror attack in New York to get the death penalty.

The 29-year-old attacker told officers he planned to continue his killing spree across Brooklyn Bridge, according to court papers.

Sayfullo Saipov has appeared in court shackled in a wheelchair, accused of killing eight people.

He told the court that he had aimed to kill as many people as possible – adding that he was proud of what he had done and pleased with its effect.

He said he deliberately carried out the atrocity on Halloween night as there would be more people on the street.

Prosecutors say the 29-year-old Uzbek national waved his right to silence, told officers he was inspired by Islamic State videos and requested permission to display an ISIS flag next to his hospital bed.

The attack was brought to an end when Saipov was shot in the stomach by a police officer after allegedly driving a rented truck down a crowded cycle path.

Police say he crashed into a school bus and yelled "Allahu Akbar" - Arabic for "God is greatest" - as he got out of the truck armed with two imitation guns and three knives.

Victims

Eight people were killed in the attack.

Of the 12 injured, one was forced to undergo a bilateral amputation and three others were also critically hurt.

Five of those who died were part of a group from Argentina celebrating the 30th anniversary of their high school graduation.

Two Americans and a Belgian woman who was in New York City with her mother and sister were also killed.

Darren Drake was one of those who died - his father Jimmy said the family is devastated:

Charges

The charges state: "Approximately one year ago, Saipov began planning an attack in the US and approximately two months ago decided to use a truck in order to inflict maximum damage against civilians.

"In particular, Saipov was motivated to commit the attack after viewing a video in which (IS leader) Abu Bakr al Baghdadi questioned what Muslims in the US and elsewhere were doing to respond to the killing of Muslims in Iraq."

Earlier, NYPD deputy commissioner of counter-terrorism John Miller said Saipov left handwritten notes at the scene of the truck rampage which said "Islamic State will endure forever."

Joon Kim the acting US Attorney for the Southern District of New York said law enforcement and everyday people in the city are not afraid of the evil if extremists.

“They see through there false hateful rhetoric and are committed to bringing them to justice,” he said. “And that is what we plant to do with Sayfullo Saipov.”

President Trump has described the suspect as an "animal" who "brought in... other people" to the US and was "the main point of contact for 23 people." 

He said he would consider sending the suspected terrorist to Guantanamo Bay and vowed to dismantle the diversity immigrant visa programme, which he says allowed Saipov to immigrate to the US in 2010.

The atrocity was New York City's worst terror attack since 9/11.

Reporting from IRN ...