Is anyone surprised that the feds bowed out of yesterday's New York terror arrest due to concerns about the role of the informant and entrapment? The New York Times has the details. As I wrote last night,

Who wants to read about an informant-induced, non-operational terror plot in NYC that never was going to get off the ground when you can watch Homeland? It's much more compelling and about as real as the chances of a "lone wolf" pulling off a terror attack under the watchful, ever-present eye of the NYPD.

The Times reveals there were 400 hours of recordings between the suspect Jose Pimentel and the informant. They smoked marijuana together, and some of Pimentel's incriminating statements were made while high. Pimental had no money -- it sounds like the informant paid for the bomb parts and provided the pot. [More...]

In the task force, investigators were concerned that the case raised some entrapment questions, two people said. They added that some investigators wondered whether Mr. Pimentel had the even small amount of money or technical know-how necessary to produce a pipe bomb on his own, had he not received help from the informer.

Pimental also may have had mental issues -- he reportedly tried to circumcise himself three times. According to neighbors:

At the Cachet barber shop on 138th Street and Broadway, people said he would sit on a bench there for hours without talking. “He’s like a zombie; he’s in limbo all the time,” Ralphie Sanchez, 59, said.

The NYPD says it had Pimentel under surveillance for a year and he didn't start to talk about a bomb until a month ago. Hatred of the U.S. is not a crime. Nor does hatred constitute predisposition to commit a crime. It looks like the FBI is willing to throw the NYPD and its informant under the bus.

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    When did the FBI get so picky? (none / 0) (#1)
    by caseyOR on Mon Nov 21, 2011 at 11:00:12 PM EST
    It's not like they haven't run the same scam on some schlub who talked a better game than he could ever play. The Christmas Tree Lighting bomber, right here in Portland, comes to mind.

    The feds picked up some internet postings from an teenager upset about his parents' split, contacted him via an informant who then proceeded to mastermind the whole plot. The informant paid for everything, arranged for the van that held "the bomb", took the kid to an isolated place on the coast to set off a prototype. And before you can say "bobs' your uncle," the feds are holding a press conference touting their masterful stifling of this egregious Alqueda-sympathizing wannabe bomber.

    So, if the FBI doesn't like this arrest NYPD must have really screwed it up.

    "provided the bomb parts and the pot" (none / 0) (#2)
    by Mr Natural on Mon Nov 21, 2011 at 11:18:14 PM EST
    Stock Up for Christmas at the NYPD!

    Meanwhile, back in the underbelly, New York's Most-Spied-On have turned their backs on New York's CIA-Lite.

    When the FBI... (none / 0) (#3)
    by kdog on Tue Nov 22, 2011 at 09:57:52 AM EST
    has concerns about entrapment, ya know its some serious f*ckin' entrapment, considering the FBI entraps on the regular.

    The NYPD rivals the spook apparatus of other nations, never mind cities...thats what I call spooky.

    When the cash and free weed is flowing, many a knucklehead will spout all the crazy sh*t ya want...it proves nothing except people like free money and free weed...go figure.