Man Charged Over Brisbane Airport Bomb Scare 'Went To Extraordinary Lengths'
Police have taken the “unusual” step of showing the device carried by an alleged offender that in part shut down Brisbane International Airport on Sunday night.
Queensland Police Commissioner Ian Stewart praised the courage of officers and partner agencies who dealt with a "highly volatile" situation that safely ended with the 50-year-old man's arrest.
He is facing bomb hoax, assault and stalking charges following an alleged domestic violence that forced the airport into lockdown and grounded many flights overnight.
"I think this photo behind us clearly indicates just the extraordinary lengths that a person has gone to to create a perception of risk, fear and threat," Commissioner Stewart told reporters on Sunday.
The incident began just before 9pm on Sunday night in the terminal's food court when the man allegedly pulled out a knife and placed a metal object on a table following an argument with a woman. He claimed the object was a bomb.
Witnesses told The Sunday Mail he then chased the woman, a family member, while brandishing the knife.
Commissioner Stewart said first responders, including the Australian Federal Police, local police and airport security staff, were faced with a "dynamic" situation that initially appeared "absolutely life threatening".
The airport was locked down for more than two hours and airport train services halted, though police said the incident was not terror-related.
Just after 9pm, police confronted the man and fired non-lethal beanbag rounds at him, at which point he surrendered to officers.
Assistant Commissioner Peter Crawford said the tactical decision made at the time was suitable to contain the alleged offender.
"I will say that the police officers who were dealing with that in close proximity showed a great deal of bravery, and the outcome of no loss of life here is a good outcome," he said.
Commissioner Stewart said the arrival of a police officer who spoke Arabic -- the offender's primary language -- was crucial in resolving the incident peacefully and swiftly.
"I think it underscores the need for the diversity of our organisation, mirroring the community that we serve every day," he said.
Police said the behaviour and statements made by the offender caused them to check several vehicles and residences in the Gold Coast area for improvised explosive devices (IEDs), though nothing was located.
The man was taken to the Brisbane watch house where he was charged on Sunday morning with staging a bomb hoax, making a false statement, assault, contravening a domestic violence order, stalking and stealing.
He will appear in Brisbane Magistrates Court on Monday.