- Associated Press - Tuesday, August 26, 2014

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (AP) - Federal prosecutors say a man who made a pipe bomb out of air bag canisters has been sentenced to 10 years in prison.

U.S. Attorney Joyce Vance White said in a statement Tuesday that 55-year-old James David Kircus was working at an auto salvage business in Birmingham when he took the air bag from a vehicle and reconfigured it into a high-powered explosive.

Officials say air bag cylinders contain sodium azide, a chemical that quickly creates gas to inflate the bag during a car crash. Prosecutors say Kircus had removed the azide tablets from the cylinders and crushed them to enhance their explosive power before putting them back in the canisters.

Kircus’ co-workers reported him to police after seeing what they thought were bombs in his toolbox.

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