Tuesday 22 May 2012

US Airways flight diverted after passenger claims to have device surgically implanted inside her – Yahoo News

A flight from Paris bound for Charlotte was diverted to Maine on Tuesday after reports say a passenger claimed to have a device surgically implanted device inside.

US Airways flight 787--which left Paris' Charles de Gaulle airport shortly after 11:00 a.m. local time en route to Charlotte Douglas International--was rerouted to Bangor, Maine, shortly after noon ET, CNN reported. The Boeing 767 was carrying 179 passengers and a crew of nine, a spokesman for the airline said, confirming that there had been an unspecified "security issue."

A Homeland Security official told NBC News that the flight was diverted because a "passenger was acting suspiciously."

According to CNN, a French woman on board the flight handed a note to a flight attendant, claiming that she had a surgically implanted explosive inside of her.

Two F-15 fighter jets were scrambled to intercept the flight over the Atlantic, NORAD said. The plane landed safely in Bangor.

Doctors on board the flight examined the woman and "saw no sign of recent scars," according to House Homeland Security Committee chairman Peter King's office.

The woman, a French citizen from Cameroon, had planned a 10-day visit to the United States, CNN added. She was traveling alone and had no checked baggage.

"[We are] aware of reports of a passenger who exhibited suspicious behavior during flight," the TSA said in a statement. "Out of an abundance of caution the flight was diverted to BGR where it was met by law enforcement."
The FBI-led Joint Terrorism Task Force is assisting with the investigation, but officials told the network they did not believe it was a terrorist threat.

According to US Airways, the flight was scheduled to leave Bangor at 1:00 p.m. and arrive in Charlotte at 3:27 p.m. ET, though as of 1:50 p.m. was still shown sitting on the tarmac.

It's not the first time a flight from Paris has been diverted to Bangor. In 2010, a Delta flight from Paris to Atlanta was diverted to Bangor after a man claimed to be carrying dynamite in his luggage. The man, Derek Stansberry, a 26-year-old Air Force veteran from Florida, was later found not guilty by reason of insanity.

Just last week, a US Airways flight from Maine to Philadelphia was interrupted when a man allegedly tried to enter the cockpit. That flight was diverted to Boston, and the man was arrested.


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