Police block off a sidewalk while responding to a report of an explosion near Times Square. Picture: AP Photo/Mark Lennihan
Washington - The family of Akayed Ullah, identified by authorities as the man who set off a pipe bomb in a Manhattan subway passage, is "outraged by the behaviour of law enforcement" officials conducting the investigation.

In a statement issued Monday evening through the Council on American-Islamic Relations of New York (CAIR-NY), the family said "we are heartbroken by this attack on our city today and by the allegations being made against our family."

The statement complained about the treatment of the family in the hours after the bombing. "Today we have seen our children, as young as 4 years old, held out in the cold, detained as their parents were questioned.

"One teenage relative," it said, "was pulled out of high school classes and interrogated without a lawyer, without his parents. These are not the actions that we expect from our justice system . . ."

When asked to elaborate, Albert Fox Cahn, legal director for the New York chapter of the Muslim civil rights organization, said in an email that there would be no further comment for the moment.

Ullah, an immigrant from Bangladesh who came to the United States in 2011, was hospitalized with injuries from the blast, allegedly caused when a pipe bomb strapped to his body went off.

They said they determined he intended to explode the crude device in the crowded passage, which runs from the subway station at 42nd Street and Eighth Avenue to a nearby station at Seventh Avenue, because that is where he allegedly connected a small battery to Christmas lights wired to detonate the pipe bomb.

Officials said he told them he was inspired by propaganda put out by Islamic State militants.

Police said they searched a Brooklyn home where Ullah, 27, lived with his parents as well as an apartment housing another relative, according to the New York Times. The Times said officers sped away from the home with a woman wearing a hijab.

Officials had no immediate response to the family's statement.

The Washington Post