In the latest Third World “immigrant” related terror incident, a Pakistani national Nadeem Muhammad has been jailed for 18 years by a court in Manchester, Britain, after being found guilty of trying to bomb a Rynair flight between that city and Bergamo, Italy.
According to the BBC, Muhammad was jailed at Manchester Crown Court for possessing an explosive with intent to endanger life after a pipe bomb was found in his hand luggage.
Muhammad, 43, was attempting to board a Ryanair flight to Bergamo, Italy, on January 30 when security officers found the device, made from batteries, tape, a marker pen and pins.
When the object was swabbed, the officers said there was no trace of explosive on the outside and they did not believe it was a viable device.
It was only after further forensic examination weeks later that it was found to be dangerous and Muhammad was charged with a bomb plot.
After sentencing, Judge Patrick Field QC criticised airport security for making a ‘wholly erroneous and potentially dangerous’ conclusion that the bomb was not viable after it was seized by officers.
The court had heard that airport staff swabbed the device, which was later found to contain nitroglycerin, but found no trace of explosive and terminal three security manager Deborah Jeffrey initially put it into her pocket.
Judge Field said the situation was ‘compounded’ by police who accepted the assurance that the device was not viable and missed an ‘early opportunity’ to arrest Muhammad – who was allowed to board a flight to Italy five days later and another back to the UK before he was arrested on February 12.
Earlier this month a jury reached a majority verdict of 10 to two on the charge following 15 hours and 45 minutes of deliberations.
The court also heard Muhammad, who was born in Pakistan but had an Italian passport, was planning to detonate the bomb once on board the Boeing 737.
Muhammad, who also had a residence in Bury, Greater Manchester, returned to the airport the following day to collect his mobile phone, which had been taken by police, and then again on February 5 when he boarded another flight to Italy.
It was only on February 8 when the device was examined by forensics officers that suspicions were raised and the bomb squad was called.
The explosive was then sent for examination by expert Lorna Philp, who found it was a ‘crude but potentially viable improvised explosive device’.
The device contained double base smokeless propellant, normally found in firearms ammunition, which was made up of nitroglycerin and nitrocellulose.
Italian police raided Muhammad’s home and workplace on February 9 and took him to a police station. But he was released again after a couple of hours and on February 12 boarded another flight back to the UK. He was arrested when he arrived back at Manchester Airport.