Federal authorities have tied as many as a dozen people to a suspected Al Qaeda-linked bomb plot on U.S. soil as they continue to gather evidence to indict on terrorism charges the young Afghan immigrant at the center of the case, law enforcement officials said Monday.

Authorities said that they did not know the exact number of potential suspects or many of their identities, but that they had been connected through electronic intercepts, surveillance, seized evidence and interviews.

A federal law enforcement official and others, speaking on condition of anonymity because of the high level of secrecy surrounding the investigation, said the suspects appeared concentrated in the New York area, with possibly others in the suspect's home state of Colorado and elsewhere.

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