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Twitter joke triggers terror bust

world Updated: Jan 18, 2010 22:30 IST

Agencies
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A British traveler was startled when his holiday plans went kaput just because he joked on Twitter. Joking to pals on Twitter that he said he was going to "blow the airport sky high." Paul Chambers, 26, was arrested under the Terrorism Act and interrogated for 7 hours last week. He was finally released on bail, suspended from work and banned from the local Doncaster airport for life. "I would never have thought in a thousand years that this would happen because of a Twitter post," he told the Independent.

"I'm the most mild-mannered guy you could imagine," he added. Cops were tipped off by a member of the public, and they arrived at Chambers' workplace with a print-out of his Twitter post. Chambers said officers had never before heard of Twitter, and insisted they were arresting him because of security fears in "the world we live in." Police deleted Chambers' post, and confiscated his iPhone and computers. He returns to court next month. Similar arrests have reportedly occurred in the US, but this was a first for the UK.