Fri, 12 Sep 2003

Suspicious package at Bank Mandiri

KUPANG, East Nusa Tenggara: The East Nusa Tenggara Police bomb squad found a suspicious package at the local Bank Mandiri branch on Thursday.

The discovery of the package was made hours after the bank received a phoned-in bomb threat.

An unidentified man called the Kupang branch of Bank Mandiri at 10:46 a.m. and threatened to blow up the bank.

The man said he had placed a package on the ground floor of the bank that would explode within an hour.

"I conveyed the message to my superiors, who immediately reported the threat to the police," said Linda, who received the telephone call.

It was not immediately clear whether the package that was found on the ground floor did contain explosives.

Denis Leihutu, the chief of the bomb squad, said a preliminary investigation of the scene indicated that the bomb threat was a hoax.

The seven-story State Financa building in Kupang received a similar threat on Tuesday from a caller who claimed to have planted a bomb on the second floor of the building. No explosives were found. --JP