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Saudi man traveling with pressure cooker arrested at Detroit airport

An airplane is seen at Detroit Metropolitan Airport.
May 14, 2013 12:00:00 AM PDT
A Saudi man was arrested at a Detroit airport after he allegedly lied about why he was traveling with a pressure cooker. The man's nephew said Monday the case is a misunderstanding.

Customs officials said Hussain Al Khawahir acted strangely after flying into Detroit Metropolitan Airport on Saturday. They found the pressure cooker in his luggage. Authorities also said a page was missing from the man's passport and he couldn't explain why.

According to a criminal complaint, Al Khawahir originally told authorities he brought the pressure cooker with him because pressure cookers aren't sold in America. He then changed his story and said his nephew had bought one but it "was cheap."

Al Khawahir was being held on allegations of lying to Customs and Border Protection agents and of using a passport with a missing page. He is due in court Tuesday.

His nephew, Nasser Almarzooq, told the Associated Press that he had asked his uncle to bring him the pressure cooker so he could make lamb because the ones made in Saudi Arabia are higher quality.

Almarzooq, a college student at the University of Toledo in Ohio, said his uncle was coming to visit him for a couple weeks.

The cooking device has been in the news recently because officials say two pressure cookers were used in the April 15 Boston Marathon bombings that killed three people and injured more than 260 others.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.


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