UK & World News

  • 27 January 2014, 14:05

Penn State Student Faces WMD Charges

A Russian student at Penn State University has been accused of building a bomb in his bedroom and charged with possessing a weapon of mass destruction.

Vladislav Miftakhov, 18, was arrested after police found a suitcase holding two containers with exposed fuses and other explosives-related materials.

His roommate at Penn State's satellite campus in Altoona said Miftakhov had recently set off three "mini-bombs" just outside their apartment.

"He was off the wall," Andrew Leff told the Altoona Mirror.

Mr Leff said he had told Miftakhov to get rid of the bomb-making materials. He called the Russian a "dumb" and "crazy" kid who was bored and impulsive, but not dangerous.

 In another interview with WTAJ TV, Mr Leff said: "He's the weirdest human being I've ever met to be honest.

"He was always doing abstract things but never really anything dangerous like this before."

Police said they were investigating an alleged pot-growing operation at Miftakhov's apartment, reported by his landlord, when they found the explosive materials.

Police searched the apartment at the weekend and told people living there that they were safe.

According to an affidavit, Miftakhov said he was going to "blow things up" when a police officer asked him what he was going to do with the devices.

Later, under questioning at the police station, Miftakhov changed his answer.

"Miftakhov stated his intent was to set the devices off in a remote field and did not intend on 'blowing anything up,'" the affidavit said.

The devices were later dismantled by Pennsylvania State Police troopers.

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