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Pennsylvania Man Charged for Calling in Fake Explosive Threat at PHL Airport

On November 5, 2012, the United States Attorney's Office, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, filed an information charging Kenneth W. Smith in connection with a hoax telephone call to PHL airport authorities about reported explosives on a commercial aircraft.  Mr. Smith was charged with providing malicious false information concerning an attempt to destroy an aircraft when he allegedly reported that a passenger carried an explosive substance onto an aircraft.

The investigation determined that on September 6, 2012, Smith used a payphone to contact the Philadelphia Police and reported that a US Airways passenger en route to Texas possessed an explosive material with the intent to pass through security and board the aircraft.  By the time, the alleged false report was received, the aircraft had departed.  FAA air traffic controllers rerouted the flight in question back to PHL where the passenger was removed from the aircraft, searched, and questioned.  No explosive materials were found.

This investigation is being worked jointly with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Philadelphia Police Department, and the Department of Homeland Security.

Note:  Indictments, informations, and criminal complaints are only accusations by the Government.  All defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.