A French citizen whose “suspicious behavior” during a flight from Paris to Charlotte, N.C., led to a US Airways jet getting diverted to Bangor, Maine, is now under arrest, one official said.
Rep. Peter King, R-N.Y., chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee, told ABC News today that the passenger, a woman born in Cameroon and traveling alone for a 10-day trip to the U.S., had passed a note to the flight crew saying that she had a surgically implanted device in her.
Another congressional official who spoke on the condition of anonymity said the note had been written in French and did not mention a bomb.
Alexa Young, a 20-year-old student at Campbellsville University in Kentucky, told ABC News today that she was on her way back from a mission in Africa and had been seated about five rows in front of the woman.
She said that the woman was really disruptive but looked like she was on drugs. Young said the passenger kept going to the bathroom and holding her stomach.
King said that doctors had examined the woman and found no signs of recent scars. He said she had no checked baggage.
Young said the flight crew had asked several times over the intercom whether a doctor was onboard. She said the pilot then said the plane would have to land in Maine because it was low on fuel.
Andrew Christie of US Airways confirmed to ABC News that Flight 787 with 179 passengers and nine crew members had been diverted around noon to Bangor International Airport because of a “security issue.”
According to the Transportation Security Administration, the flight was diverted “out of an abundance of caution.”
John Cornello, the spokesman for the North American Aerospace Defense Command, told ABC News that it had launched two f-15s to intercept the US Airways aircraft.
A Bangor airport official said the passengers were fine and would eventually continue their flight to Charlotte on the same plane.
Young told ABC News that once the plane had landed, passengers were surprised to see the police board and remove the woman. She said after they left, the pilot apologized over the intercom for misleading the passengers about the fuel shortage. She said everyone was shocked.
“No one screamed but jaws dropped,” she said.
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