This is a very strange story—three African refugees involved in transporting an apparently harmless item that was made to look like a device that could have been detonated. I’m struck by the use of the word “refugee” since most of these stories don’t identify a criminal suspect’s immigration status.
Here is the story from the Crisis Jones Report:
Three African refugees have been arrested after a recent Phoenix airport security check uncovered what appeared to be an explosive device, police said Tuesday.
A U.S. Transportation Security Administration employee discovered a cellphone attached to a container holding an organic material while performing a security check on carry-on bags at Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport on Friday, according to Sgt. Steve Martos, a spokesman for the Phoenix Police Department. Police have not yet determined what the organic material is.
Authorities said the Police Department’s bomb squad and the Fire Department’s hazardous-materials crew determined the device was not an explosive.
Officials said the owner of the device, 51-year-old Luwiza Daman, a refugee from Ethiopia, told investigators that an acquaintance had given her the device and asked her to deliver it to an unknown person in Des Moines, Iowa.
Later Friday evening, investigators found a second individual involved in the incident, 25-year-old Shullu Gorado, a refugee from Eritrea, at his residence near 19th Avenue and Camelback Road, Martos said.
Investigators said Gorado told them he gave the device to Daman after a third individual, 34-year-old Shani Asa, a refugee also from Eritrea, gave him the device.
Investigators found Asa on Monday afternoon at his residence near 43rd Avenue and Osborn Road, Martos said.
Asa said he attached the cellphone to the container housing the organic material and gave the device to Gorado, Martos said.
All three individuals were arrested on suspicion of having a hoax device and conspiracy to obtain a hoax device.
Then this reporter at AP wonders how long the three refugees have been in the US. Dear Reporter: Contact the US State Department for the answer. While you are at it find out which federal contractor(s) resettled them (start with the Phoenix contractors).
Martos did not know how long Daman, Gorado and Asa have been living in the U.S. He said Gorado and Asa most recently were living in Phoenix but did not know where Daman was living.
I mentioned Sky Harbor here in 2008 when a cleaning service that employed Somali women was told the women could wear their Somali clothes instead of the required uniform. I wondered about the wisdom of hiring Muslims to clean airports and planes in the first place.