It is suspected that American authorities are close to prosecuting the accused bomb-maker behind the Lockerbie terror attack of 1988.
Abdelbaset Megrahi, a former Libyan intelligence officer, was found guilty of mass murder in 2001 and imprisoned for life.
He was the only person ever convicted of the attack, but it emerged on Wednesday that the U.S. Department of Justice is close to charging Abu Agila Mohammad Masud, who is believed to have bombed the area, the Daily Record reports.
When flying from London to New York on December 21, 1988, the bombing of Pan Am flight 103 over Lockerbie, Scotland, killed 270 people in Britain’s deadliest terrorist atrocity.
He is reportedly being detained by the Libyan authorities, although the Wall Street Journal notes that the US is trying to extradite him.
The atrocity killed about 190 Americans, with many returning home for Christmas. The Scottish city was also destroyed by the crash, damaging homes.
In the coming days, close to the anniversary of the attack, Attorney General William Barr is expected to announce the latest event.
It is known that Masud faces charges of aircraft destruction resulting in death and the destruction of an interstate commerce vehicle resulting in death.
U.S. officials said that he had traveled to Malta before the attack, where he had designed the deadly device and filled a suitcase with clothes before it was finally put on Pan Am 103.
The lawsuit, brought by prosecutors at the U.S. attorney’s office in Washington, D.C., is also known to be based primarily on a confession that Masud allegedly gave to the Libyan authorities in 2012.
American officials said that this evidence was passed on in 2017 to the Scottish authorities, as well as Masud’s travel and immigration records.
The family of Megrahi continues to appeal the verdict against him and has always maintained his innocence.
In 2003, the Gaddafi regime agreed to pay the victims’ families $2.3 billion in compensation and acknowledged civil responsibility for the attack.
Following the revolution in the world in 2011 that came as part of the Arab Spring, Muammar Gaddafi was toppled and killed by his people.
Lybian officials did not respond to requests for comment from the Wall Street Journal.