Federal law enforcement officials arrested a man this week for allegedly trying to carry an explosive device onto an aircraft at Pennsylvania’s Lehigh Valley International Airport in a checked piece of luggage.
The FBI arrested Mark Muffley, 40, at his home in Lanford, Pennsylvania, on Monday after he fled the airport when authorities ordered him over the airport’s loudspeaker to report to airport security.
WFMZ-TV reported that the device was about three inches in diameter, wrapped in wax-like paper and clear plastic wrap, and was found to contain powder used in commercial-grade fireworks.
The “powder is suspected to be a mixture of flash powder and the dark granulars that are used in commercial grade fireworks,” the complaint said. “The black powder and flash powder are susceptible to ignite from heat and friction and posed a significant risk to the aircraft and passengers.”
The bag also had “a can of butane, a lighter, a pipe with white powder residue, a wireless drill with cordless batteries, and two GFCI outlets taped together with black tape,” the complaint said.
The FBI and bomb experts were called to the scene after the device was found at around 11 a.m. on Monday, and the terminal was closed until 2 p.m. when officials gave the all clear.
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Muffley was charged with possession of an explosive at an airport and possessing, or attempting to place, or attempting to have placed an explosive or incendiary device on an aircraft.