Security at JFK airport
Two Israeli passengers, one Russian alarm US aviation security after acting suspiciously onboard NYC-bound flight. Two F-16s dispatched to escort plane; passengers released after questioning
Security scare on the 10th anniversary of September 11– two Israelis and a Russian passenger raised suspicion during a domestic flight in the United States, prompting the North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD) to dispatch two F-16 fighter jets to escort the aircraft, New-York based Daily News reported on Monday.
According to the report, the three aroused the suspicion of other passengers after repeatedly walking back and forth from the cockpit to the restrooms and making strange hand gestures to each other.
At one point, the report claimed the suspicious passengers locked themselves in the restrooms and refused to come out.
The concerned passengers informed one of the flight attendants about the unusual behavior, and she in turn notified the air marshals, who alarmed NORAD.
American Airlines flight 34 from Los Angeles, carrying 153 passengers and 11 crew members, landed safely at 4:30 pm local time, after being escorted into JFK by F-16 jets. Upon arrival, the three suspicious passengers were detained and taken in for investigation. The three reportedly cooperated
with FBI agents and were released after questioning.
The pilot, Alden Williams, told the Daily News that he was unaware of being tailed by jets.
"They don't tell us anything. I didn't know that the fighter jets were scrambling," Williams said.
A passenger onboard the plane also said he did not notice the jets, adding that they realized something was going on only after the plane had landed and he noticed several police vehicles waiting on the runway strip.