Detroitnews— “Underwear bomber” Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab was transferred Wednesday to the Supermax prison in Colorado, the so-called “Alcatraz of the Rockies” that houses a number of infamous al-Qaida operatives and other inmates.
A Bureau of Prisons spokesman would not say why Abdulmutallab, 25, was moved there from the nearby high-security facility.
“We wouldn’t comment about why any inmate is moved from one status to another,” prisons spokesman Edmond Ross said Thursday. “Every individual is reviewed, and they are placed in the appropriate secured facility.”
There was no immediate comment from the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Detroit.
The maximum-security prison in Florence, Colo., 90 miles south of Denver, has about 430 inmates.
Abdulmutallab’s fellow inmates include Unabomber and University of Michigan graduate Ted Kaczynski and Oklahoma City bombing conspirator Terry Nichols, a Lapeer native.
At the Supermax facility, some inmates, including terrorists, are assigned to a unit where they are locked in cells 23 hours a day. Those inmates are allowed one hour of recreation a day in a yard secluded from other prisoners, said Joe Gunja, a former warden at the prison complex.
Abdulmutallab likely will face unusually restrictive conditions: No visitors; no phone calls, except from lawyers; no outgoing mail; and no communication with fellow inmates, even those in adjoining cells — the air vents are sealed.
Abdulmutallab was sentenced in February to four life terms for his failed attempt to blow up a Detroit-bound flight on Christmas Day 2009.
He pleaded guilty in October to trying to blow up the airliner over Metro Detroit with a bomb in his underwear.
Abdulmutallab initially was spared going to Supermax, which drew outrage from at least one passenger aboard the flight.
Passenger Shama Chopra of Montreal wrote a letter earlier this week urging U.S. District Judge Nancy Edmunds to intervene and have Abdulmutallab assigned to Supermax