Airline attack defense delays opening statement



DETROIT (AP) — The lawyer for a Nigerian accused of trying to blow up a Detroit-bound plane has waived his opening statement to jurors until later in the trial.

Anthony Chambers informed the judge at the close of 90 minutes of remarks Tuesday by a prosecutor who gave a blow-by-blow account of how Umar Farouk Abdulomutallab (OO’-mahr fah-ROOK’ ahb-DOOL’-moo-TAH’-lahb) sought martyrdom by attempting to bring down a plane with a bomb in his underwear on Christmas 2009.

Chambers’ decision was somewhat of a surprise. Just last week, he had persuaded Abdulmutallab not to give his own statement. Abdulmutallab technically is acting as his own lawyer.

Federal prosecutor Jonathan Tukel told jurors that Abdulmutallab was on a mission to destroy Northwest Airlines Flight 253 for al-Qaida.