PARIS – The city prosecutor opened an inquiry Monday into the man who boarded a U.S. -bound airliner with explosives hidden in his sneakers, and officials said they confiscated computer hard drives from Internet cafes he visited.
The judicial inquiry could lead to a charge of "criminal association in relation to a terrorist enterprise" and would include anyone suspected as an accomplice to Richard C. Reid, said officials who spoke on the customary condition of anonymity.
Reid was in Paris briefly and visited Internet cafes from which the hard drives were taken by police over the weekend. The 28-year-old British citizen was arrested after American Airlines attendants saw him trying to touch a match to his sneakers during a Paris-Miami flight on Dec. 22. Flight attendants and passengers subdued him, and the plane was diverted to Boston,
On Friday, a judge in Boston ordered Reid held without bail, saying he was a risk to the public and likely to flee if released. He faces U.S. charges of interfering with a flight crew through intimidation or assault, which carry a maximum 20-year prison sentence.
FBI agent Margaret G. Cronin testified at Friday's hearing that the explosives in his sneakers could have blown a hole in the fuselage.
French officials are expected to appoint an anti-terrorism judge to study Reid's case.