Qatari diplomat detained on Las Vegas bound flight

Friday, April 9, 2010

A United Airlines Boeing 757
Image: Pedroalcaina.

A man tried to ignite his shoes during a flight from Washington, DC to Las Vegas, Nevada on Wednesday. Air Marshals subdued the Qatari diplomat on board the airplane before it landed safely at Denver International Airport in Colorado. The airplane was United Airlines Flight 663, a Boeing 757 with 157 passengers and 6 crew members on board.

A search concluded that there were no explosives on the plane. NBC News reports that there was smoke coming from a restroom which led to an air marshal subduing the suspect.

The diplomat was reportedly smoking a cigarette in the plane's lavatory. He also reportedly stated, jokingly, that he wanted to light his shoe on fire. It is unlikely that he will face charges due to his diplomatic immunity.

After the incident was reported by the pilot, military jets scrambled and escorted the airplane safely to Denver. The TSA and law enforcement agencies took the suspect into custody and are currently investigating the incident.

This incident occurs just as many countries are trying to lift their airplane restrictions caused by a Nigerian man who tried to detonate explosives in his underwear.


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