Charlotte air traffic controller arrested for having weapon of mass destruction

An air traffic controller at Charlotte-Douglas International Airport and another man were arrested Friday accused of having a weapon of mass destruction.

The FBI confirms that Paul Dandan was charged with possession of a weapon of mass destruction and it was later confirmed that Dandan's roommate, Derrick Fells, built the bomb. The weapon in question was a homemade pipe bomb, authorities said. Investigators say Fells meant to use the bomb on a neighbor, but later changed his mind. Fells then changed his mind and gave the bomb Dandan, police said.

Paul George Dandan, the 30-year-old FAA employee, was arrested along with Derrick Fells, 39, on Friday night.

While Dandan was not allowed inside the terminals and restricted areas of Charlotte Douglas International Airport, the Federal Aviation Administration issued a statement after his arrest, saying they were terminating his access. "He did not have access to any aircraft at the airport", the airport stated.

Authorities at the airport stressed that Dandan only had access to an offsite air traffic control tower.

"Any weapons designed or intend to cause death or serious bodily injury through the release, dissemination, or impact of toxic or poisonous chemicals, or their precursors", the Federal Bureau of Investigation says on its website. He is now being held in the Mecklenburg County Jail under a $150,000 bond. CMPD bomb squad agents confirmed that the object in question was a homemade pipe bomb.

The FAA also confirmed to Spectrum News that Dandan's employee access to the facility has been revoked and that they are working with investigators.

The Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department received a 911 call on November 3 from a person reporting a homemade explosive, law enforcement said Friday.

Vanessa Coleman

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