Defence blames FBI agent in US airport bomb plot

2015-02-03 12:35

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Wichita - An FBI agent who befriended a man now accused of plotting a suicide bomb attack at a US airport radicalised him and induced him to commit the crime, defence attorneys argued on Monday.

Terry Loewen, a former avionics technician, was arrested in December 2013 when he allegedly tried in to bring a van filled with inert explosives onto the tarmac at Mid-Continent Airport in Wichita, Kansas. His arrest capped a sting operation in which undercover FBI agents posed as co-conspirators.

Loewen has pleaded not guilty to attempting to use a weapon of mass destruction, attempting to use an explosive device to damage property and attempting to give material support to al-Qaeda.

Defence attorneys contended in a court filing on Monday that the evidence of government entrapment is so strong that the indictment should be thrown out even before the case goes to a jury.

No predisposition

They argued Loewen had no predisposition to commit the crime when the government began its investigation in June 2013.

Jim Cross, a spokesman for the US attorney's office in Kansas, said prosecutors will review the defence filings and respond to the court.

Court documents detail Loewen's alleged conversations with undercover FBI agents. The discussions began with vague sentiments about his desire to commit "violent jihad" against the US before turning into a detailed, concrete plot in which agents recruited him to use his airport access to plant a bomb in a martyrdom operation.

The defence noted that Loewen told the first undercover agent that he was the only person with whom he had had any contact with about jihad. Loewen also told the undercover agents he knew nothing about explosives.

Defence attorneys also argued that the indictment should be dismissed due to violations of Loewen's constitutional rights to freedom of speech, religion and association.

In another, Loewen's attorneys argued that because the explosives were inert and the bomb would not explode, the weapon did not meet the legal definition of a "destructive device." They asked the court to dismiss the counts related to the attempted use of weapon of mass destruction and attempted use of explosive device.

Read more on:    fbi  |  us  |  security

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.
NEXT ON NEWS24X publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24


Man scores date with tennis superstar after Twitter bet

It’s a modern day Cinderella story, but one American man took ‘shoot your shot’ seriously in 2017.


You won't want to miss...

6 myths about male cancer
Who are the highest paid models of 2017?
10 gorgeous plus-sized models who aren't Ashley Graham
5 top leg exercises for men
Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.