US & Canada

Fake-bomb TV crew held at New Jersey airport

Newark Liberty in New York Image copyright AFP
Image caption The production company apologised for any disruption caused

Seven TV crew members have been arrested at a US airport after allegedly trying to film the smuggling of a fake bomb through security.

The incident happened on Thursday at Newark Liberty in New Jersey.

Transport officials said a bag carrying an item with "all the makings of an improvised explosive device" was found before it had cleared security.

US media say the crew were part of a reality show being made by a production company for CNBC.

The production company, Endemol Shine North America, issued a statement saying it was investigating the incident and co-operating with the authorities.

"We sincerely apologise for any disruption caused," the statement said.

Endemol Shine produces the show, Staten Island Hustle, which CNBC has taken up. CNBC has not yet commented.

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The crew reportedly wanted to covertly film themselves going through a security checkpoint with the fake device.

Sources reported by the New York Daily News said the crew then wanted to film the reaction of the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) officials and the possible public panic that would ensue.

Images of the device showed it apparently made of vacuum cleaner parts and wires.

A source told the New York Daily News: "The TSA bomb tech just happened to be [at the checkpoint]. He quickly looked it over, said it was nothing and they were taken in."

The crew face charges of conspiracy to create a public alarm, among others, authorities say.

Lisa Farbstein, public affairs spokesperson at the TSA, said the crew members also faced civil penalties of up to $13,000 (£9,300) for each security violation.

Endemol Shine North America is behind such shows as Big Brother, MasterChef and Fear Factor.

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