Lawyer: Traveler’s pressure cooker innocent

DETROIT — A Saudi man arrested at Detroit Metropolitan Airport after federal agents accused him of lying about why he was traveling with a pressure cooker knew nothing about the device’s use in the Boston Marathon bombings, his attorney said Tuesday.

Hussain Al Khawahir brought the pressure cooker at the request of his nephew, a college student in Ohio he planned to visit, defense lawyer James Howarth said. He said the device was to be used for cooking, not bomb-making.

Two pressure cookers were used to set off shrapnel-packed bombs in Boston last month that killed three people and injured more than 260 others.


‘‘He doesn’t know about Boston,’’ Howarth said after joining Khawahir during a hearing in US District Court in Detroit. The lawyer said a pressure cooker is now a ‘‘red-ticket item’’ because of the Boston bombings, but noted that, ‘‘carrying a pressure cooker does not make you a criminal in the United States.’’

Get Ground Game in your inbox:
Daily updates and analysis on national politics from James Pindell.
Thank you for signing up! Sign up for more newsletters here

Khawahir, who was arrested Saturday at the airport, waived his right to a detention hearing on Tuesday, meaning he will remain jailed until a probable-cause hearing on May 28.

Associated Press