COLUMBUS, Ga. – A judge has ordered a Saudi national held without bond for allegedly threatening to bomb a Delta Air Lines flight after the U.S. military refused to hire him as an interpreter.
U.S. Magistrate G. Mallon Faircloth ruled Tuesday to send the case against Saleh Al Suwailem to a grand jury, which will decide if he should be indicted for making a terrorist threat against an airplane.
Al Suwailem, 45, was at Fort Benning on June 5 interviewing for an interpreting job in Iraq. After hearing he would not get the job because he had been denied security clearance, Al Suwailem allegedly threatened to bomb the flight that he was going to take to return home to Boise, Idaho, the next day.
FBI Special Agent Todd M. Kalish testified Al Suwailem made the threat while drinking beer with fellow interpreter candidates at Fort Benning. A fellow candidate reported his comments.
David Roberts, Al Suwailem's attorney, argued that no probable cause existed for the charge.
Al Suwailem, a legal resident of the United States, was arrested June 7 and is being held in the Muscogee County Jail.