CHARLOTTE, N.C. – An air traffic controller at Charlotte Douglas International Airport was arrested in Charlotte Friday after investigators alleged he was in possession of a weapon of mass destruction.
According to the Federal Bureau of Investigation, 30-year-old Paul George Dandan was charged with possession of a weapon of mass destruction. He is currently being held in the Mecklenburg County Jail under a $45,000 bond. The FBI said they are assisting Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police (CMPD) with their investigation and that they don't anticipate federal charges to be filed against Dandan at this time.
CMPD officers responded to a 911 call on November 3 in reference to a person being in possession of a homemade explosive device in the 300 block of Minitree Lane. CMPD bomb squad agents confirmed that the object in question was a homemade pipe bomb.
Detectives learned that 39-year-old Derrick Fells built the explosive device. He admitted to detectives that he made the bomb in order to use it against a neighbor. Investigators allege that Fells changed his mind and gave away the bomb to Dandon. According to CMPD, Charlotte Douglas Airport said Dandon, who was an air traffic controller, only had access to the offsite air traffic control tower and could not access any restricted areas of the terminal or ramp.
The FAA confirmed to NBC Charlotte that Dandan’s access to the airport was terminated following his arrest Friday afternoon. The FAA issued the following statement after Dandan's arrest:
The FAA has terminated the employee's access to the facility and is cooperating with law enforcement authorities.
On Friday, detectives obtained warrants against both Fells and Dandon. Fells was charged with three counts of manufacturing a weapon of mass destruction and one count of possession of a weapon of mass destruction. Dandon was charged with possession of a weapon of mass destruction, acquiring a weapon of mass destruction and transporting a weapon of mass destruction.
In March of 2015, Dandan was arrested and charged with assault on a female.