Russian Citizen in Pennsylvania Charged With Having WMD

Police initially investigated apartment for marijuana.

January 26, 2014, 5:46 PM

Jan. 26, 2014— -- Authorities have arrested a Russian citizen in Altoona, Pa., for allegedly having a "weapon of mass destruction" among other charges after they say they found a bomb at his apartment.

Vladislav Miftakhov, 19, was arrested Friday after police officers allegedly found evidence of bomb making materials and a suspected bomb in his apartment, according to the Altoon Police Department.

Police officers had initially entered the apartment on the suspicion that Miftakhov was growing marijuana.

After finding the suspected bomb, Pennsylvania state police were called in to diffuse it. Miftakhov allegedly told investigators he had bought supplies over the Internet over a few weeks to construct the bombs, according to police.

Federal agencies are now investigating the case, as well as, local police.

Before Miftakhov was arrested, The Associated Press reported, an officer asked him what he was going to do with the devices. Miftakhov allegedly responded that he was going to "blow things up," according to the arrest affidavit.

However, after being arrested and as he was being questioning at the police station, Miftakhov said he had only experimented with the devices in California, but not in Pennsylvania, according to the affidavit. He also said he had not planned on blowing up anything.

"Miftakhov stated his intent was to set the devices off in a remote field and did not intend on `blowing anything up,'" the affidavit said, according to the Associated Press.

According to a copy of the arrest affidavit posted by the Altoona Mirror, Miftakhov said he bought some of the materials from Amazon to experiment with making flash powder.

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Andrew Leff a neighbor in Miftakhov's apartment building told ABC affiliate WTAE-TV in Pittsburgh, Pa., he was surprised by the severity of the charges.

"He's the weirdest human being I've ever met to be honest," Leff said. "He's always doing abstract things but never really anything dangerous like this."

According to the AP, Miftakhov was a student at Penn State's satellite campus in Altoona.

Miftakhov was charged with having a weapon of mass destruction, risking catastrophe, possession of a weapon and recklessly endangering another person among other charges. His bail was posted at $500,000 and he will have his preliminary hearing on Feb. 5.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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