Security

Man Who Flew to LAX with Weapons in Bag Ordered Held

Had knives, body bags and smoke grenades in checked luggage

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A man who boarded a Los Angeles-bound plane from Japan wearing a bulletproof vest and flame retardant pants with knives, body bags and an alleged pyrotechnic smoke grenade in his checked luggage was ordered held without bail Friday by a federal judge who said the man was a flight risk.

Yongda Huang Harris, 28, a naturalized U.S. citizen of Chinese descent, was arrested Friday at LAX and faces a charge of transporting hazardous materials for the smoke grenade. U.S. Magistrate Judge Paul Abrams ordered Harris detained after hearing arguments from a prosecutor who said authorities found material on his computer that showed a sexual interest in young girls and an inclination to violence against children. 

Asst. U.S. Atty Melissa Mills said Harris was a danger and a flight risk and that the materials were particularly concerning given the man had recently worked as a junior high school teacher in Japan. She added that authorities became aware of the man only one week earlier and were still developing the case.