A Libyan man accused of making the bomb that killed 270 people after it blew up Pan Am flight 103 over Lockerbie in Scotland in 1988 is in custody in the United States, Scottish and US law enforcement officials said on Sunday.
Abu Agila Mohammad Mas’ud Kheir Al-Marimi was taken into custody about two years after former US Attorney General Bill Barr first announced the United States filed charges against him.
A Justice Department official confirmed on Sunday that the United States has taken custody of the alleged Pan Am flight 103 bomb maker. Mas’ud is expected to make his initial court appearance in a federal court in Washington.
Further details about the timing of the court hearing will be forthcoming, the official said.
At the time of the bombing, US investigators uncovered evidence that one of the possible suspects went by the name of “Abu Agela Masud,” but were unable to locate him, according to a sworn statement by an FBI agent in support of the government’s criminal complaint.
Decades later, the FBI obtained a copy of a September 12, 2012, interview of Mas’ud conducted by a Libyan law enforcement officer while he was in custody there.
During the interview, Mas’ud “admitted to building the bomb that brought down Pan Am Flight 103 and to working with Megrahi and Fhimah to execute the plot,” the FBI agent’s statement says.
Mas’ud also told the interviewer he was involved in other similar plots, and said the bombing was ordered by Libyan intelligence leadership.
He also said former Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi, who was killed by rebels in October 2011, “thanked him and other members of the team for their successful attack on the United States.”
The agent who filed the statement said the FBI was able to corroborate Mas’ud’s confession through the course of its investigation.