New evidence in the terrorist bombing of Pan Am Flight 103 in December 1988 shows for the first time that Libyan intelligence agents may have built and planted the bomb that destroyed the plane, The New York Times reported Wednesday.

The two-year investigation of the bombing over Lockerbie, Scotland, has focused on evidence that Iran hired a Syrian-sponsored terrorist group, the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine-General Command, to bomb an American airliner in late 1988.The officials said they still believe that Iran commissioned the attack in revenge for the accidental downing of an Iranian passenger jet in 1988 by a United States Navy warship in the Persian Gulf and that Syrian authorities were aware of the Popular Front's activities and took no action to stop them, it said.

But, they said, investigators now believe that the Popular Front's leader, Ahmed Jabril, who is based in Damascus, paid agents of the Libyan leader, Col. Moammar Gadhafi, to carry out the bombing when he found out in October 1988 that Western intelligence agents had penetrated his operations.