Police: Man detained after dynamite comments at Miami airport

 

ngreen@miamiherald.com

A man at Miami International Airport who said he had dynamite in his luggage — because he thought it would be funny — was arrested Monday, according to Miami-Dade police.

The suspicious luggage led to a partial evacuation at Concourse J. The Miami-Dade police bomb squad searched the bag and found no explosives, police said.

Alejandro Leon Hurtado, 63, of Guatemala, was at the TACA Airlines ticket counter shortly after noon, checking in for his flight, when a ticket agent asked if he had any hazardous materials in luggage, according to an arrest affidavit. Hurtado answered that he had dynamite.

The agent asked Hurtado again, the affidavit said, and a second time he said he had dynamite, then laughed.

“Once the defendant was told that the police were going to be called, the defendant stated that he was joking,” the affidavit said.

Hurtado told police that he had said he had dynamite and meant it to be a joke.

But the police didn’t find it funny. They charged him with one count of false report of a bomb or explosives at an airport.

The investigation delayed one outgoing Avianca Airlines flight by an hour. Some arriving international arrivals were also delayed, airport spokesman Greg Chin said.

Miami Herald staff writer Diana Moskovitz contributed to this report.

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