Suspect freed in plane bomb alert probe

Suspect freed in plane bomb alert probe

Swedish police evacuated 273 people from a Pakistan International Airlines jet diverted to Stockholm due to a bomb alert today and briefly detained a passenger on suspicion of preparing aircraft sabotage.

However, no explosives were found on the man, who was released after questioning by police, or on the Boeing 777.

All passengers – except the suspect – were allowed back on the plane nine hours later.

It took off for Manchester, England, from where the passengers would continue their journey to Karachi, Pakistan, said Jan Lindqvist, a spokesman for airport operator Swedavia.

The Royal Canadian Mounted Police said it was investigating whether the incident was a “terrorism hoax”.

The plane was travelling from Toronto to Karachi when the pilot asked to land after Canadian authorities received a tip that a passenger was carrying explosives.

A SWAT team detained the suspect as he was evacuated from the aircraft along with the other passengers. An Associated Press reporter at the airport saw the passengers boarding yellow airport buses parked near the aircraft.

Police described the suspect as a Canadian citizen of Pakistani origin, aged about 30, but said they had not confirmed his identity.

A spokesman for the state-owned Pakistan International Airlines said the suspect was a 25-year-old Canadian national.

Stockholm police spokesman Kjell Lindgren said a prosecutor decided to release the man after questioning.

Lindgren declined to give details and said investigators would release more information about the incident later.

The tip was “called in by a woman in Canada”, police operation leader Stefan Radman said, adding that Swedish police took the threat seriously.

Royal Canadian Mounted Police spokesman Sgt Marc LaPorte said an anonymous caller called twice yesterday saying a man on the flight had explosives.

“The first call provided vague information. It did lay out that there was an individual on that specific flight in possession of explosives and then the second call provided more details with regards to the identity of the person,” LaPorte said.

He declined to elaborate on the caller, saying there was potentially a criminal offence involved.

“We take any call of this nature very seriously. Basically we have to ascertain the credibility and reliability of the call and try to determine whether there was a deliberate intent on behalf of the caller to mislead the police or if it falls into the definition of a terrorism hoax.”

More on this topic

Bomb alert plane resumes journey after UK stopBomb alert plane resumes journey after UK stop

Jet resumes journey after bomb alert arrestJet resumes journey after bomb alert arrest

Passenger suspected of plane sabotage after emergency landing in SwedenPassenger suspected of plane sabotage after emergency landing in Sweden

Sweden: Passenger detained over airliner bomb threatSweden: Passenger detained over airliner bomb threat

More in this Section

Smoke shrouds Sydney’s skyline as wildfires burn nearbySmoke shrouds Sydney’s skyline as wildfires burn nearby

Andrew project suffers sponsorship blow amid Epstein statement callsAndrew project suffers sponsorship blow amid Epstein statement calls

Medics to get day-in-the-life experience of bowel disease patientsMedics to get day-in-the-life experience of bowel disease patients

‘Wearable glucose monitors may benefit people with diabetes and memory problems’‘Wearable glucose monitors may benefit people with diabetes and memory problems’


Lifestyle

Tis the season for sequins and excess, but minimalists can stick to their style guns in the season’s next level neutrals. From low-key glitz that’s perfect for party wear to the wardrobe heroes with trans-seasonal appeal, slide into neutral for maximum style with minimal effort. Carolyn Moore reports.Low-key glitz for minimalists with this season's neutrals

How to plump, hydrate and get rid of spots fast before your Christmas party.The Skin Nerd: Getting your quick fix for the festive party season

Irish photographer Seamus Murphy brought music star PJ Harvey to Afghanistan to film part of their documentary, writes Esther McCarthy.Headlong into the war zone in new documentary

Kya deLongchamps shows us how to champion our environmentWinter greens: How to champion our environment this season

More From The Irish Examiner