Miami airport reopens after evacuation - WKOW 27: Madison, WI Breaking News, Weather and Sports

Miami airport reopens after evacuation

AP Photo AP Photo

MIAMI (AP) -- A senior law enforcement official says the scientist detained at Miami International Airport because of a suspicious item in his luggage had once been charged with illegally transporting bubonic plague.

The official told The Associated Press on Friday that no dangerous material was found on 70-year-old Thomas Butler after he was detained Thursday night. He was released Friday.

The official said Butler cooperated fully after he arrived on a flight from the Middle East. The official requested anonymity because he wasn't authorized to release the information.

Butler was teaching at Texas Tech in 2003 when he was accused of illegally transporting the deadly germ. He was acquitted on those counts but convicted of fraud. He served a two-year sentence.


WASHINGTON (AP) -- Miami International Airport has completely reopened following the evacuation of six concourses Thursday night.

A government official says a scientist has been detained in Miami after screeners found a metal canister in his luggage that looked like a pipe bomb.

The official says the FBI and Miami Dade police are interviewing the 70-year-old man. No explosives have been found. The official spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss the ongoing investigation.

Four of Miami International Airport's six concourses along with an onsite hotel were evacuated Thursday evening. A bomb squad spent hours scouring the airport and passengers were evacuated from the complex Thursday night and airport roadways were closed down. Police and airport officials described the shutdown of the four concourses as a safety precaution.

The airport fully reopened just after 4 a.m.

Powered by Frankly