US to unseal charges against Lockerbie bombing suspect: Media

A 1988 photo shows police officers looking at the wreckage of a 747 Pan Am airliner that exploded over Lockerbie, Scotland. PHOTO: AFP

WASHINGTON (AFP) - The United States plans to unseal charges soon against a Libyan man suspected of assembling the bomb that blew up a US airliner over Lockerbie, Scotland, in 1988, US newspapers reported on Wednesday (Dec 16).

The suspect, Abu Agila Mohammad Masud, is currently held by the Libyan authorities, according to The Wall Street Journal, and US authorities are seeking his extradition to stand trial in the United States.

The New York Times said Masud's exact whereabouts are unknown but he was imprisoned in Libya at one point for unrelated crimes.

The Journal said Masud, alleged to have been a top bomb-maker for the late Libyan leader Moamer Kadhafi, is suspected of assembling the device that blew up Pan Am Flight 103.

The Journal and Times said US prosecutors are expected to unseal charges soon against Masud.

Monday is the 32nd anniversary of the bombing which killed a total of 270 people, including 190 Americans and 11 people on the ground.

Two Libyans were put on trial in the Netherlands for their alleged roles in the attack and one of them was convicted in 2001.

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