U.S. plane attacker passed Nigeria security checks

Let’s face it folks, with the tens of thousands of passengers traveling to the United States every day, there is NO WAY to avoid a handful of them getting through security. It’s simply a numbers game. Sooner or later one of these scum-bags will succeed in detonating a bomb on a plane; I’m actually surprised it hasn’t happened already. TGO

Refer to story below. Source: Reuters

By Nick Tattersall Nick Tattersall

LAGOS (Reuters) – A Nigerian man who tried to blow up a U.S. passenger jet went through normal security checks when he began his journey in Lagos and had a multiple-entry U.S. visa issued in London, a senior Nigerian aviation official said.

Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, 23, was charged on Saturday with trying to blow up Northwest Airlines flight 253, a Delta-owned Airbus 330, as it approached Detroit from Amsterdam on Christmas Day with almost 300 people on board.

He started his journey in Nigeria’s commercial hub of Lagos, where he boarded a KLM flight to Amsterdam before going through another security checkpoint while in transit at Schiphol airport, Dutch counter-terrorism agency NCTb has said.

The United States asked airports and airlines around the world to tighten security after the foiled attack, which raised questions about how Abdulmutallab had been able to get explosive materials onto the plane despite higher security worldwide since the September 11, 2001 hijacked airline attacks.

The head of Nigeria’s Civil Aviation Authority, Harold Demuren, said Abdulmutallab had been through the usual screening procedures at Lagos airport before boarding the KLM flight.

“The passenger did not check in any baggage but was spotted with a shoulder bag. He went through a normal screening and check-in process,” Demuren said in a statement published in Nigerian newspapers on Sunday, citing CCTV footage.

He said Abdulmutallab was in possession of a multiple-entry U.S. visa issued in London on June 16, 2008 and due to expire in June 2010, which was scanned without the Advance Passenger Information System (APIS) returning any objection.

“Thereafter, he passed through aviation security comprising a walk-through metal detector and baggage X-ray screening machine. He proceeded to the boarding gate where he went through secondary screening as confirmed by KLM officials,” he said.

Demuren said Nigeria had recently passed security audits by both the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) and the America Transportation Security Audit (ATSA).

Abdulmutallab was refused a visa to enter Britain in May 2009 when he tried to apply for a course at a bogus college, Britain’s Sunday Times newspaper said.

The son of a respected Nigerian banker, Abdulmutallab was charged with trying to blow up the plane by setting alight an explosive device attached to his body.

An initial FBI analysis found the device contained PETN, also known as pentaerythritol, one of the explosives carried by “shoe bomber” Richard Reid in his failed attempt to blow up a U.S. passenger jet just before Christmas in 2001, months after the September 11 attacks.

The device consisted of a six-inch (15-cm) packet of powder and a syringe containing a liquid, which were sewn into the suspect’s underwear, according to media reports.

Demuren said Abdulmutallab had purchased his $2,831 Lagos-Amsterdam Detroit return ticket at the KLM office in Accra, Ghana, on December 16 with a January 8, 2010 return date.

(Additional reporting by Rosalba O’Brien in London; editing by Philippa Fletcher)

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