New York man charged in fire-bombing of mosque

By REUTERS
March 19, 2012 20:59

 
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NEW YORK - Federal and state grand juries have indicted a New York man on suspicion of hate crimes in connection with five New Year's Day Molotov cocktail attacks, including one against a mosque and another on a building used as a Hindu place of worship.

Federal prosecutors in Brooklyn and the Queens District attorney on Monday announced their indictments separately in "parallel cases," an unusual circumstance in which state and federal charges are brought over the same incident.

The attacks alarmed religious leaders concerned over violent religious bigotry, though police said the suspect may have also been motivated by personal grudges.

The suspect, Ray Lazier Lengend, 40, confessed to all five fire-bombings upon being arrested two days after the attacks, police said at the time.

His defense lawyer, Kenneth Deane, declined to comment on Monday.

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