Authorities thwarted a TV film crew aiming to get a fake bomb through security at Newark Liberty International Airport Thursday.
Nine men were arrested by Port Authority police around 3 p.m., when the fake bomb was discovered in their carry-on luggage, the New York Daily News reported.
Sources told the paper the crew, who are part of the reality TV show, “Staten Island Hustle,” said they wanted to film the reactions of TSA agents as they found the fake, realistic-looking contraption — and the mass hysteria that they hoped would follow.
The device was made from PVC pipe, a hose and parts from a vacuum cleaner — “all the markings of an improvised explosive device,” a spokeswoman from the TSA told the Daily News.
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“Staten Island Hustle” will air on CNBC, and it “centers on a group of life-long friends and investors from Staten Island,” Variety reported. The crew was from a Dutch production company contracted by the network called Endemol Shine North America, which also produces “Big Brother” and “MasterChef.”
"We are looking into the details of what happened as a matter of priority and are in contact with relevant authorities on the ground,” a spokeswoman from Endemol said in a statement, according to NJ.com. “While this process is ongoing, we are unable to comment further, but in the meantime, we sincerely apologize for any disruption caused."
The suspects were charged with conspiracy, creating a public false alarm and interference with transportation. Though they all were later released, they will face charges in court in Essex County at a later date, the Daily News reported.