Judge tells Nigerian man at Mich. hospital he’s charged with trying to blow up Northwest plane

By Corey Williams, AP
Saturday, December 26, 2009

Judge tells man he’s charged with blowing up plane

ANN ARBOR, Mich. — A federal judge has told a Nigerian man that he is charged with trying to blow up a Northwest Airlines plane on Christmas Day.

U.S. District Judge Paul Borman read 23-year-old Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab (OO-mahr fah-ROOK ahb-DOOL-moo-TAH-lahb) his charges in a conference room on Saturday at the University of Michigan Medical Center in Ann Arbor, where he is being treated for burns.

Agents brought Abdulmutallab into the room in a wheelchair. He had a blanket over his lap and wore a green hospital robe.

The judge asked Abdulmutallab if he understood the charges against him. He responded in English: “Yes, I do.”

The government accuses him of bringing an explosive device onto Flight 253, but as the plane neared Detroit’s airport, it sparked a fire instead of an explosion.

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