REVEALED: ‘Bomb’ almost smuggled onto passenger plane in Pennsylvania was a commercial grade FIREWORK stitched into suitcase lining – and arrested man, 40, has long rap sheet including harassment, disorderly conduct, and fighting
- Mark Muffley, 40, of Lansford, Pennsylvania, was arrested on Monday for allegedly bringing a ‘bomb’ onto an Allegiant flight
- The circular device contained a powder that is used in ‘commercial grade fireworks’ and had multiple fuses and was found in the bag’s lining
- Muffley has a series of run-ins with the law, dating back to 2017, for harassment, disorderly conduct, and fighting
The ‘bomb’ that was nearly smuggled onto an Allegiant flight was made from commercial grade fireworks that was allegedly stitched into a suitcase liner by a man who has a long rap sheet.
Mark Muffley, 40, of Lansford, Pennsylvania, was arrested at his home on Abbott Street on Monday after allegedly attempting to bring a bomb onto a passenger flight at Lehigh Valley International Airport. Muffley faces charges of possession of an explosive at an airport and possessing/attempting to place an explosive on an aircraft.
The 40-year-old has a long rap sheet dating back to 2017, which includes harassment, disorderly conduct, and fighting, according to the Pennsylvania Magisterial District Court.
Muffley’s bag triggered an alarm before being loaded onto the plane, and the TSA found a ‘circular compound’ hidden in the lining of the baggage, the FBI said. The device, which was circular in shape, was found inside the bag’s lining. It was roughly three inches in diameter.
The ‘powder is suspected to be a mixture of flash powder and the dark granular that are used in commercial grade fireworks’ that was wrapped in wax paper and plastic, the complaint read.
Mark Muffley, 40, of Lansford, Pennsylvania, (pictured on his license) has been taken into FBI custody after trying to smuggle an explosive device onto an Allegiant flight on Monday
Muffley was about to take an Allegiant flight from eastern Pennsylvania to Sanford, Florida. He’s been charged with with possession of an explosive in an airport and possessing, attempting to place, or to have placed an explosive on an aircraft
There were also two fuses attached, one of which appeared to be part of the original manufacturing and is used to ignite explosives quickly.
‘Attached to the circular compound was a “quick fuse” and a “hobby fuse,”‘ the complaint read. ‘A quick fuse is designed to ignite explosives quickly. It appeared to be a part of the original manufacture of the compound. A “hobby fuse” is a known to be regular fuse that burns slower than a quick fuse. The “hobby fuse” appeared to be added post manufacture.’
The other fuse was added later, and burns slower than a quick fuse, officials said adding that the powders could ignite from heat and friction posing a ‘significant risk’ to the plane and passengers.
Muffley’s bag triggered an alarm before being loaded onto the plane, and the TSA found a ‘circular compound’ hidden in the lining of the baggage, the FBI said. The FBI said the device, which was circular in shape, was found inside the bag’s lining. It was roughly three inches in diameter and made of firework material
Officials say that the device was concealed inside of a checked piece of luggage and contained multiple fuses
Investigators also found in the suitcase a can of butane, a lighter, a pipe with white powder residue, a wireless drill and two GFCI outlets taped together, the complaint said.
The suspicious package was discovered shortly after 11am on Monday and the west side of the airport’s main terminal was shut down ‘for precautionary measures’ around 11.15am, according to WFMZ.
The ‘bomb’ was removed from the airport. After it’s removal, the main terminal was reopened around 2pm.
Once found, Muffley was called to come to the security desk around 11.40am, but was later seen leaving the airport on security footage at 11.45am.
Muffley is due in court on Thursday.
He was arrested at his home on Abbott Street (pictured) on Monday