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Arrest at Heathrow leads to Cathay flight evacuation

April 6, 2017 Headline News No Comments Email Email

Mystery surrounds the motives of a man arrested at Heathrow Airport after reportedly using a “wrong boarding pass” to walk onto a Cathay Pacific flight, triggering an alert which led to the plane being evacuated.

The man was arrested on suspicion of being unlawfully airside and was taken to a police station in west London, where he was detained in custody, London’s Daily Mirror reported.

The paper quoted a passenger saying travellers were stunned when told a man aboard who was known to police had an issue with his boarding pass and everyone had to get off for a sweep of the plane.

The flight was delayed for about three hours in the early evening, when dinner would have been served on the flight. Instead, passengers were confined for about two hours in a restricted area of the airport. The only food available for the hungry horde was ice cream from a machine.

A Heathrow spokesperson said: “Yesterday evening a flight to Hong Kong experienced a minor delay after a passenger was found to have incorrect travel documents.

“As per standard procedure, the passenger was quickly offloaded and the flight subsequently departed.”

A spokesman for London’s Metropolitan Police Service said that a man was arrested at Heathrow Airport “having boarded a Cathay Pacific flight scheduled to depart for Hong Kong. The man was arrested on suspicion of being unlawfully airside. He was taken to a west London police station, where he remains in custody.

“The passengers returned to the gate, before re-boarding the aircraft around 90 minutes later.”

Cathay declined comment as the matter was under police investigation.

Written by Peter Needham

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