Plane grounded after man jokes about bomb in case

Plane grounded after man jokes about bomb in case

The captain of a Thai Lion Air flight scheduled to leave Don Mueang airport for Hat Yai airport in Songkhla yesterday grounded the plane after a passenger reportedly joked about a bomb hidden in a case.

Pol Col Surachet Bandit, chief of Don Muang police, said the incident occurred at 2.30pm when a flight attendant was helping passengers place their luggage in the overhead lockers.

A man in his 20s told her to be careful as there might be a bomb hidden in a case.

The flight attendant reported the incident to the captain who cancelled the flight and ordered all passengers to leave the aircraft immediately.

Explosive ordnance disposal officers were then called in to examine the case but did not find any explosives hidden inside, Pol Col Surachet said.

The man, who was later identified as Pichit Boondaeng, 23, was taken in for questioning at a Don Muang police substation.

He was charged with reporting false information, causing alarm within an aircraft.

If found guilty, he faces a maximum of five years in jail and/or a maximum fine of 200,000 baht, said Pol Lt Tossaporn Dudong, an investigator at Don Muang police station.

The airline will file a civil lawsuit against Mr Pichit, police said.

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