Suspect Of Concordia University Bomb Threat Arrested, Charged For Inciting FearBy Emily Marks, UniversityHerald Reporter
A 47-year-old man has been arrested after a bomb threat that targets Muslim students at Concordia University was revealed. The risk led to the forced evacuation of three buildings at the school's downtown campus.
At 2 a.m. ET on Thursday, a police team and canine unit searched an apartment on Darlington Avenue in Côte-des-Neiges, CBC reported. Three buildings were evacuated after a letter was sent to several media outlets suggesting that bombs would be set off at the engineering, computer science and visual arts integrated (EV) complex as well as the Hall building.
Evacuation of the EV complex and the Hall building started on 11:30 a.m. on Wednesday. Concordia University announced by 12:07 p.m. that the Guy-De Maisonneuve (GM) building, which is connected to the EV building, will also be evacuated.
The authorities were unable to find anything suspicious during their search. The buildings were reopened Wednesday afternoon and evening classes as well as midterm exams pushed through.
The letter was allegedly from a group named the Council of Conservative Citizens of Canada (C4). They complained about Muslim students at the university. The suspect said that explosive items were placed inside the buildings.
Quebec Premier Philippe Couillard expressed his worry about everyone's safety when he heard about the letter. He described the bomb threat as "a despicable act" that must be "condemned by all of society."
Concordia University spokesperson Chris Mota admitted that they were made aware of the bomb threat at around 9 a.m. They immediately contacted Montreal police and cooperated with the officials.
According to the National Post, the suspect Hisham Saadi made an appearance at the Montreal courthouse on Thursday afternoon via video conference from Bordeaux Prison. He faced charges of inciting fear of terrorist activities, issuing a death threat as well as interrupting the students and personnel of Concordia University from their activities.
No explosives or related materials were found at Saadi's apartment. Concordia president Alan Shepherd said that they are relieved that the bomb threat suspect has been arrested.