Shenzhen Airlines bombing hoaxer under detention
Updated: 2012-09-02 13:26
Xiong Yi, a 29-year-old male resident of Shiyan City in Hubei Province, was taken by plane to provincial capital Wuhan, according to Hubei police.
"I was wrong, and I feel regret," he said after arriving at Wuhan Tianhe International Airport.
Xiong was caught on Saturday afternoon in a hotel in Dongguan City in the southern province of Guangdong.
He confessed that he fabricated the information and threatened to bomb the plane, according to police.
He said that he made an anonymous phone call to an airport in Shenzhen, Guangdong, at 10:43 p.m. on Thursday, claiming that explosives had been planted on Shenzhen Airlines Flight ZH9706, which was in mid-air, bound for Shenzhen from Xiangyang in Hubei.
Xiong said over the phone that the explosives would be detonated 45 minutes after the flight's take-off.
The plane made an emergency landing at an airport in Wuhan at 11:24 p.m. out of concerns for passenger safety.
Police conducted a thorough inspection but found no dangerous items on the aircraft or in passengers' belongings.
Xiong has now been placed under further investigation.
Besides criminal liabilities, Xiong will likely be subjected to civil prosecution, according to sources with Wuhan Tianhe Airport.
The airport and Shenzhen Airlines are calculating the financial losses caused by the incident.
On Thursday evening, Wuan Tianhe Airport started an emergency response plan.
And over 30 vehicles and 200 people including public security officials, firefighters, medical staff, flight managers and armed police were dispatched to deal with the incident.
"It was quite an unexpected experience for me, with the announcement of the 'possibility of explosives on the plane'," said Peng Ruojie, a passenger on the ZH9706 flight, on Sina Weibo, China's equivalent of Twitter.
"All the passengers got off the plane. We were surrounded. The security check was super-careful, with each piece of clothing checked," he said.
This actually follows a similar incident to hit China's civil aviation industry earlier in the week.
An Air China flight from Beijing to New York returned to Beijing Capital International Airport after a threatening message concerning the flight was received on Wednesday evening.
No abnormalities were detected on the plane, which departed for New York hours later.