For months, Terry Loewen, 58, an avionics technician driven by radical ideas and prepared to die in a suicide attack, allegedly moved forward with a plot to detonate explosives at Wichita,Ks., Mid-Continent Airport, reports the Wichita Eagle. The planned attack was designed to inflict the maximum number of deaths at an airport in the nation's midsection before Christmas.
The plot got as far as a gate to the airport shortly before 6 a.m. Friday, when authorities arrested Loewen without incident. What he didn't know until his arrest is that the people he had been conspiring with all along were FBI agents, said U.S. Attorney Barry Grissom, stressing that the public and passengers were never in danger. Loewen faces three federal charges: trying to use a weapon of mass destruction, attempting to damage property and attempting to provide material support to a designated foreign terrorist organization that Loewen thought was al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula, based in Yemen.