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NY judge reluctant to delay trial for Manhattan bomb suspect

Associated Press logo Associated Press 4/01/2017

NEW YORK — A federal judge said Wednesday he's sticking with a March trial date for a man accused of setting off bombs in New Jersey and New York City.

U.S. District Judge Richard M. Berman rejected arguments from defense lawyers for 28-year-old Ahmad Khan Rahimi that they need more time to prepare his case. They said they've not yet gotten halfway through materials from 10 computers, including 12,000 emails and 10,000 pictures on one computer alone.

"It's not doable," Assistant Federal Defender Sabrina Shroff told the judge of the March 27 trial date.

Berman insisted it was an important case and urged the federal defenders office to pour resources into it, working "night and day."

Rahimi has pleaded not guilty to charges that he detonated a pipe bomb along a charity race in Seaside Park, New Jersey, and planted two pressure cooker bombs in Manhattan on Sept. 17.

One device did not explode. The other one detonated in the Chelsea neighborhood, injuring 30 people.

The Afghanistan-born U.S. citizen was hospitalized for weeks for treatment of wounds suffered in a police shootout during his Sept. 19 capture outside a bar in Linden, New Jersey.

Another pretrial hearing was scheduled for Jan. 31.

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