Man accused of trying to bring explosive on Sanford-bound flight

Mark Muffley faces charges of possessing an explosive at an airport

Mark Muffley was caught on surveillance video at the Lehigh Valley International Airport on Monday, according to investigators. (Federal Bureau of Investigation)

ALLENTOWN, Penn. – A Pennsylvania man was arrested after law enforcement said he tried to bring explosives onto a flight bound for the Orlando area on Monday, according to court records.

FBI officials said that the man — identified as Mark Muffley — had checked in a suitcase with explosives inside at Lehigh Valley International Airport.

In a criminal complaint, investigators said Muffley was set to board a flight to Orlando-Sanford International Airport, but the explosives were discovered during a screening by TSA agents.

Mark Muffley's driver's license photo (Federal Bureau of Investigation)

Upon inspecting the luggage, TSA found a “circular compound, approximately 3 inches in diameter, wrapped in a wax-like paper and clear plastic wrap” hidden within the luggage’s lining, the complaint shows.

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Investigators said that FBI agents were dispatched to the scene, and a bomb technician determined that the compound contained a powder that could have been a mix of “flash powder and dark granulars” — commonly used in fireworks.

Attached to the device was a “quick fuse” similar to a candle wick — apparently part of the original manufacture of the compound — as well as a “hobby fuse” that burns more slowly and appeared to have been added after the manufacture, authorities said.

The luggage also contained a can of butane, a lighter, a pipe with white powder, a wireless drill with cordless batteries and two GFCI outlets taped together with black tape, according to the complaint.

Muffley was called over the airport’s PA system to report to the airport’s security desk, though Muffley instead left the airport, investigators said.

Muffley was seen on surveillance footage leaving the airport after being called to the security desk, FBI officials said. (Federal Bureau of Investigation)

Muffley was traced to a Lansford address where he was arrested by the FBI late Monday night. He faces charges of possession of an explosive at an airport and attempting to place an explosive on an aircraft, the complaint shows.

Officials said he remains in custody pending a probable cause hearing and detention hearing Thursday at 1:30 p.m. in Allentown, with Muffley attending via video conference.

President and CEO Nicole Martz of the Orlando-Sanford International Airport provided the following statement on the issue to News 6.

-- The Associated Press contributed to this report. --

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