A widow of a victim of the 1988 plane blast that killed 270 people in Scotland spoke on Monday just before the suspected Lockerbie bomb-maker is due to appear in court.
Pan Am Flight 103 bomb maker suspect Abu Agila Mohammad Mas’ud Kheir Al-Marimi has been taken into custody by the United States nearly 34 years after the attack, the Justice Department confirmed on Sunday.
Victoria Cummock, whose husband John died in the attack, expressed her gratitude for the arrest on Monday. The suspect is expected to appear in US District Court for the District of Columbia this afternoon.
Pan Am Flight 103, en route from London to New York, exploded over Lockerbie on December 21, 1988, killing all 259 people on board and another 11 on the ground. It remains the deadliest terrorist attack on British soil.
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Of the victims, 35 Syracuse University students were killed while returning from a study abroad program.
At the press conference in Miami, Fla., Victoria Cummock, widow of passenger John B. Cummock and founder and CEO of the Pan Am 103 Lockerbie Legacy Foundation, made prepared remarks.
“Today marks an important milestone in the relentless search by the families of the victims to identify and hold accountable all those responsible for the second deadliest terrorist attack on Americans. This is a decades-old promise I made to John Cummock, my 38-year-old husband, my best friend and the father of my three children,” Cummock said in a statement previously provided to Fox News.
She celebrated that the “US arrest and detention of Libyan terror suspect Mas’ud is the first tangible step by the US Department of Justice in 34 years to hold every suspect accountable in US courts for the December 21, 1988, terrorist attack on America where our loved ones were murdered aboard Pan American Flight 103, which was flying from London to New York and exploded over Lockerbie, Scotland.
“On behalf of my family and members of my organization, I would like to express our gratitude to President Biden, a Syracuse University alumnus, and to the US authorities for putting action behind their promises,” she continued. “Hopefully this significant first step will begin to address the more than three decades of miscarriage of justice. Our wish is that the criminal proceedings begin immediately.”
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“The victims’ families are acutely aware that after 34 years, whistleblowers and witnesses die, memories fade, and evidence can deteriorate or disappear,” she added. “Apart from the 1991 criminal indictments against Libyans, al-Megrahi and Fhimah and the 2020 criminal complaint against the Libyan Mas’ud, US authorities have NOT arrested or prosecuted ANY suspect in the mass murder of 190 American citizens and 69 foreign nationals on board pursues a US flagship, including 11 people killed on the ground.”
EDITOR’S NOTE: This report has been updated to clarify that the FBI did not speak at Monday morning’s press conference.