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Press Release

Carbon County Man Sentenced for Trying to Smuggle Explosives on Plane Bound for Orlando-Sanford Airport

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Eastern District of Pennsylvania

United States Attorney Jacqueline C. Romero announced that Marc Muffley, 41, of Landsford, PA, was sentenced to 30 months in prison and 3 years supervised release by United States District Court Judge John M. Gallagher for attempting to place an explosive device on an aircraft and possessing an explosive in an airport.

On February 27, 2023, Marc Muffley possessed a bag containing an explosive device, a can of butane, lithium batteries, and a lighter, among other items, at Lehigh Valley International Airport. Then he checked that bag on a flight bound for the Orlando Sanford International Airport in Florida. Muffley admitted that when he heard his name paged over the airport's public address system, he immediately fled the airport and contacted his girlfriend to come and pick him up. He then changed his telephone number to avoid being tracked.  The FBI arrested him on a criminal complaint and arrest warrant on February 28, 2023, and pled guilty on January 17, 2024.

"Today's sentencing of Marc Muffley serves as a reminder of the importance of adhering to strict regulations and safety protocols in air travel," said U.S. Attorney Romero. "The possession of an explosive on a plane poses a grave risk of fire, explosion, and catastrophic consequences for everyone onboard. I commend the efforts of local, state, and federal enforcement officials in their diligence and moving swiftly, thereby ensuring the safety of all those affected. The U.S. Attorney's Office remains committed to working closely with airport authorities, airlines, and law enforcement agencies to uphold the highest safety and security standards for all passengers and crew."

"Protecting the American people is the very core of our mission at the FBI, and this case demonstrates how seriously we must take this mission. Due to the swift action by airport authorities and law enforcement, a potentially deadly incident was averted," said Wayne A. Jacobs, special agent in charge of FBI Philadelphia. "The FBI and our partners remain committed to ensuring the safety and security of all who work in and travel through our airports."

The case was investigated by the FBI with assistance from the Lehigh Northampton Airport Authority, the Transportation Security Administration, the Federal Aviation Administration and Department of Transportation – Office of Inspector General and is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Robert W. Schopf.

Updated May 29, 2024

National Security