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New York Bomb Suspect Had Southeast Missouri Ties

A cornerstone at the New Federal Reserve Bank.

The suspect who attempted to blow up the New York Federal Reserve Bank has ties to southeast Missouri.

The FBI arrested Quazi Mohammad Rezwanul Ahsan Nafis on Wednesday when he tried to ignite 1,000 pounds of inert explosives.

Nafis studied at Southeast Missouri State University for one semester.

The 21-year old attended Southeast in the spring 2012 semester. He is no longer enrolled at the university.

Nafis took 12 hours of entry level classes at Southeast. Nafis aspired to study cyber security but never took any upper level courses.

Transcripts from his Bangladeshi university indicate poor grades, and he did not fare well at Southeast. He did not earn the required 2.0 grade point average needed for his transfer probationary status, and he was suspended.

University President Ken Dobbins says Nafis had no formal student conduct violations.

"The faculty members that we talked to indicated that he would in fact miss some classes," Dobbins said. "But none of them said anything about him being agitated or having emotional kinds of issues."

FBI investigators assured Dobbins that Southeast Missouri State University was never a terrorist target.

Over the summer, Nafis requested his records be transferred to a college in Brooklyn. The university transferred Nafis' records and notified the Department of Homeland Security through the Student and Exchange Visitor Information System.

Dobbins is concerned people will stereotype international students based on Nafis’ actions.    

"This was an isolated instance that he went to New York and did some really foolish things," Dobbins said. "We hope that doesn’t a backlash on our students."

Southeast currently has about 800 international students.

According to the government’s criminal complaint, Nafis came to the United States with the purpose of conducting a terrorist attack. He conspired with two undercover FBI agents who led Nafis to believe he was conducting the attack for Al Qaeda.

Read the criminal complaint against Nafis.