One of Australia’ s busiest international airports was locked down after a man brandished a knife and made a bomb threat at a food court , prompting travellers to flee in panic , officials said on Sunday.
Queensland state police said they evacuated Brisbane Airport ’ s international terminal late Saturday after finding a “suspicious device ” when they responded to reports of the 50- year – old man , who spoke Arabic , threatening a woman.
Terrorism was later ruled out as the cause and the man was charged with domestic violence offences , falsely claiming to destroy or damage an aviation facility , and making a hoax bomb threat .
The device was found to be “ inert ” , but Queensland Police Commissioner Ian Stewart said its complex appearance “ indicates just the extraordinary lengths that a person has gone to create perception of risk, threat and fear” .
The device looked like a small, black safe with wires sticking out of it , according to a photograph released by police .
The man , who was taken into custody by police , is due to face court on Monday . The terminal was reopened after two hours.
There have been growing fears of terror – linked attacks by radicals inspired by Islamic State and other groups , with a foiled effort to target an Etihad flight with a crude bomb in Sydney in 2017.
Canberra introduced sweeping new security laws last year that included allowing Australian police to conduct random identity checks at airports