Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
- For the Premier of Alberta see Richard G. Reid
Richard Colvin Reid (born August 12, 1973), also known as the shoe bomber, is a British citizen born in Farnborough Hospital in Bromley, South London and a Muslim allegedly working for Al Qaeda who was arrested on December 22, 2001 for attempting to destroy a passenger airliner by igniting explosives hidden in his shoes. According to the FBI he has used the aliases Tariq Raja, and Abdel Rahim.
The flight was American Airlines Flight 63 going from Charles De Gaulle International Airport near Paris, France to Miami, Florida's Miami International Airport. He was caught when a flight attendant saw him attempting to light a match on the tongue of his sneaker. She tried grabbing his shoes, but he pushed her to the floor, and she screamed for help. When another flight attendant tried to stop him, he fought her and bit her thumb. The 6 foot 4 inch (193 cm) Reid was eventually subdued by other passengers on the airliner, two of whom were doctors who injected him with sedative drugs.
Authorities later found plastic explosives with a triacetone triperoxide (TATP) detonator, hidden in the lining of his shoes. On January 30, 2003, he was found guilty on terrorism charges at a federal court in Boston, Massachusetts and sentenced to life in prison. During the sentencing hearing he openly stated that he was an Islamic fundamentalist and declared himself an enemy of the United States.
- This CNN webpage gives a transcript of Reid's conviction
- Another CNN webpage on the event
- This timeline from CNN gives an account of Reid's actions before and during his attempted terrorist act.
- CNN article with date of birth
- Milwaukee Journal Sentinal article details the scuffle
- Richard Reid's record in the U.S. Bureau of Prisons
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