Man arrested at Manchester airport after dramatic bomb scare hoax
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A man was arrested at Manchester Airport yesterday after allegedly declaring he had a bomb on board a Qatar Airways flight arriving from Doha. An RAF fighter jet escorted the plane to the airport where it was taxied to a location far away from the arrivals terminal until the situation was brought under control.
The fighter jet was scrambled to intercept a threat as a result of "information received by the pilot about a possible device" according to a Greater Manchester Police spokesperson. The pilot relayed that the man in question had handed a letter to cabin crew stating that he had a device on him.
It turned out to be a hoax and police sectioned the man under the Mental Health Act upon arrest. The man was also assessed by a mental health team immediately after the incident.
A statement by Qatar Airways reads "The crew onboard had received a threat about a possible device on board and Qatar Airways immediately took all the necessary precautions to alert British authorities. The crew is now fully assisting police at the airport with their inquiries. The safety and well-being of our passengers and crew is our top priority. As this is a matter of a police investigation we cannot comment further at this time."
The passenger flight was carrying 282 people on board and landed shortly after 1.30pm after circling twice as airport authorities cleared a landing path for the suspected threat. Other passengers on board were unaware that a threat had been made and so were a little bemused to see armed police approach the plane and detain the man.