Detroit airline bomb suspect indicted

By Carrie Johnson
Thursday, January 7, 2010

A federal grand jury in Michigan indicted on Wednesday the man accused of trying to blow up a jet above Detroit on Christmas Day. Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab faces six criminal charges, including attempted use of a weapon of mass destruction, which carry the prospect of life imprisonment.

The 23-year-old Nigerian student traveled to Detroit from Amsterdam allegedly with a dangerous explosive hidden in his underwear. As Northwest Airlines Flight 253 prepared to land, Abdulmutallab allegedly tried to detonate the explosive, but the device failed and he was subdued by fellow passengers. The plane carried nearly 300 passengers and crew.

Abdulmutallab was also charged Wednesday with attempted murder, willful attempt to destroy or wreck an aircraft, and use of a firearm in a crime of violence.

Abdulmutallab, who was burned in the incident, has been detained at a federal prison in Milan, Mich. He is due in court Friday for a bond hearing. Federal public defender Miriam L. Siefer had no immediate comment on the charges.

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