Skip to content

Court date for man who brought bags with inert explosives to Victoria airport: RCMP

RCMP respond to a call for service at Victoria International Airport that caused all commercial flights to be suspended on Tuesday, May 24, 2022, while police investigated the incident in Sidney, B.C. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito

NORTH SAANICH, B.C. — The RCMP say a man who was carrying luggage with suspicious contents that led to the closure of the Victoria International Airport on Tuesday afternoon has been released from custody with an upcoming court date.

The Mounties did not provide the man's name or details of any charges.

They say members of their explosives disposal unit were called to examine items flagged during typical security scanning for departures and determined that two bags contained "inert military surplus explosives."

A statement released Wednesday by Cpl. Andres Sanchez says the RCMP were called when an airport security employee became concerned upon finding the first bag with two items that appeared to be "incendiary devices."

It says officers from the Sidney and North Saanich detachment went to the airport and took the man who claimed responsibility for the bag into custody, while a portion of the airport was cordoned off.

The second bag was found but could not be safely examined until specialized experts arrived, it says.

The departures wing was closed out of an abundance of caution, the RCMP statement says, before the airport reopened later Tuesday evening.

Rod Hunchak, the airport's director of business development and community relations, says about 20 flights were cancelled and three were delayed on Tuesday, with a couple of delayed departures on Wednesday morning.

Hunchak estimates that about 1,800 passengers were affected.

Sanchez says travellers are reminded to confirm that items in their luggage are permitted on planes, or to get permission for certain items before flying.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published May 25, 2022.

The Canadian Press

Looking for National News? viewed on a mobile phone

Check out Village Report - the news that matters most to Canada, updated throughout the day.  Or, subscribe to Village Report's free daily newsletter: a compilation of the news you need to know, sent to your inbox at 6AM.