Authorities say an air traffic controller at a North Carolina airport has been arrested on charges of possessing a weapon of mass destruction.
Paul George Dandan, 30, is charged with possession of a weapon of mass destruction, acquiring a weapon of mass destruction and transporting a weapon of mass destruction, CBS affiliate WBTV reports. Police say Dandan, an air traffic controller at Charlotte-Douglas, had a homemade pipe bomb he got from another man, Derrick Fells.
Charlotte-Mecklenburg police said Fells admitted to them that he made the bomb to “use it against a neighbor” with whom he had an ongoing dispute. Fells then changed his mind and gave the bomb Dandan, police said. Fells was charged with three counts of manufacturing a weapon of mass destruction and one count of possession of a weapon of mass destruction.
Dandan is being held at a county jail on $45,000 bond, according to the Mecklenberg County Sheriff’s Office. The FBI is assisting local police with the investigation but said federal charges aren’t expected at the moment.
According to WBTV, the Federal Aviation Administration said that Dandan “only had access to the offsite Air Traffic Control Tower and had no access to the restricted areas of the terminal or ramp. He did not have access to any aircraft at the airport.”
The FAA also confirmed to WBTV that they had “terminated [Dandan’s] access to the facility and is investigating.” Law enforcement sources confirmed that the FBI is involved in the investigation as well. Dandan was taken to the Mecklenburg County Jail and placed under a $45,000 secured bond.
U.S. law defines WMDs as ranging from explosive devices to biological weapons. “Any weapons designed or intend to cause death or serious bodily injury through the release, dissemination, or impact of toxic or poisonous chemicals, or their precursors,” the FBI says on its website.