Man Acquitted of Threatening to Bomb Liberty Bell

Said he had "exclusives," not explosives.

The 42-year-old Portuguese man who was arrested in January for allegedly threatening to park officials that he was going to blow up the Liberty Bell was acquitted by a Court of Common Pleas judge yesterday.

The judge, Diana Anhalt, believed Carlos Balsas’s story that he had explained to park officials when they tried to search his back that he had a “bunch of exclusives,” not explosives.

“Exclusive,” as it turns out, is the literal translation of Portugese for “personal property.”

Balsas, an urban planning professor from Arizona State University, was in the region for a job interview with Rutgers University and  stopped by Philadelphia to see some historical sites, he said.

Assistant District Attorney Andrei Govorov said that Balsas had not explained the mispronunciation until yesterday’s hearing. [Inquirer]