After waiting for crowds to pop up at the end of the Ariana Grande gig, Salman Abedi, 22, was on his cell phone as he made his ‘final walk’. Agha told the inquiry, ‘he was on the mobile phone, he was smiling.’
He was 22 years old.
Detonating Suicide Bomb Full Details
During the terror assault today, a security guard working at Manchester Arena denied he ‘fobbed off’ questions about the suicide bomber from a member of the public.
On the night, the Showsec security guard at the Arena, Mohammed Agha, told Salman Abedi’s inquiry, saying he grinned as he walked to his death and killed 22 people on May 22, 2017.
A security steward has told the Manchester Arena inquiry that it did cross his mind that Salman Abedi might be a suicide bomber before the explosion took place. Showsec employee Mohammed Agha told Paul Greaney QC that a range of scenarios went through his mind beforehand. pic.twitter.com/RtiQCihZmr
Abedi detonated his bomb seconds later, loaded with 3,000 nuts and bolts, shredding everything in its way. Before heading for the entrance doors of the venue, he was hidden in the back of the City Room, the foyer of the Stadium, as people emerged at the end of the gig at 10.30 pm. Mr. Agha told the inquiry that he had seen Abedi, dressed in black and carrying a large, bulky rucksack, three times earlier that night, but didn’t think that he was suspicious until minutes before the attack when he agreed that Abedi could be a suicide bomber.
He denied that a member of the public, Christopher Wild, who came to him at around 10.15 pm to report his concerns about Abedi, ‘fobbed off’. Around 15 minutes later, Abedi left his ‘blind spot’ CCTV location at the back of the City Room to detonate his bomb.
“Paul Greaney QC, investigation counsel, said,” Why did the man appear to be at that point when he made the final walk? Mr. Agha answered: ‘He was on the phone, mobile phone, he was smiling.’ Earlier, Mr. Agha said that Mr. Wild’s reservations about Abedi had been passed on to a colleague, Kyle Lawler. But this was at 10.25, about eight minutes after Mr. Wild expressed his questions for the first time.
At the time of the bombing, Mr. Agha, aged 19 and being paid the minimum wage of £7.90 an hour, said that his job at night was to stand by a fire escape.
He had no radio and said that he would lose his job if he left his post, except in an emergency.
Mr. Agha said as follows: ‘It’s a concern, it’s suspicion but it’s not an emergency for me. I would have got in trouble, my job is in jeopardy. ‘Mr. Agha said that by raising his hand, he tried but failed to attract the attention of his boss, who was standing 30 meters across the building.
When he was passed by a colleague, Mr. Lawler, he talked to a fellow Showsec steward who had a radio for him to report to his colleagues in the control room what Mr. Wild had brought up with him.