An Egyptian-American passenger was detained in Cairo Airport on Wednesday after authorities discovered several weapons in his luggage, security sources said.
The passenger, who arrived on an Egypt Air flight from New York’s JFK International Airport, tried to pass through customs with six metal boxes containing two 9mm pistols, 250 bullets, two swords, and 11 daggers, a security official at the Cairo International Airport told Al-Masry Al-Youm.
“Mohamed Ibrahim Khalf, a professor of botany at a US-based school, was transferred to a state security prosecutor for further investigation,” the official said on condition of anonymity.
It was unclear whether the weapons were discovered by metal detectors or by a manual search.
The official declined to comment on whether any contact has been established with US authorities to acquire more information about the suspect.
Although security measures at JFK’s International Airport have been considered among the toughest worldwide, particularly since the 11 September 2001 attacks, US authorities have further beefed up security measures after this month’s failed bomb attack on New York’s Times Square.
Suspect Faisal Shahzad, a 30-year-old Pakistani-born US citizen, managed to pass through JFK’s security checks onto an Emirates flight to Dubai despite his name being listed on the government’s no-fly list.
According to the new restrictions, airlines must check whether they have ticketed no-fly passengers within two hours of updates being made to official watch-lists, instead of the previous 24-hour span.
US airlines tightened their security last year in December when Nigerian Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab allegedly tried to detonate a makeshift bomb aboard a Detroit-bound airliner.