Manchester airport pipe bomb plotter found guilty

A Finnair aircraft taxis at Manchester Airport.
A Finnair aircraft taxis at Manchester Airport.PHOTO: REUTERS

LONDON (REUTERS) - A man who tried to smuggle a pipe bomb onto a flight from Britain's Manchester Airport was found guilty of possessing explosives with intent to harm on Tuesday (Aug 8).

Nadeem Muhammed, 43, was trying to board a Ryanair flight to Italy on Jan 30, when security officials discovered the explosive device hidden in his carry-on luggage.

Built inside a sealed marker pen barrel, the bomb had been designed to be activated manually.

Airport security officials seized the device but released the man. Muhammed later returned to the airport and flew to Italy on Feb 5.

He was arrested by the police upon his return to Britain on Feb 12.

Muhammed claimed that one of his children - the oldest of whom is 11 years old - probably put the pipe bomb in his luggage.

But prosecutors said Muhammed intended to detonate the device during the Ryanair flight.

"Nadeem Muhammed's motive for attempting to take this device onto a plane remains unknown. However it is clear that the consequences, had he been successful, could have been disastrous," Sue Hemming for the Crown Prosecution Service said.

He was found guilty of possessing explosives with intent to endanger life at Manchester Crown Court and will be sentenced on Aug 23.