Thursday, April 22, 2010

Man Added to No-Fly List in Mid-Flight

We're in the very best of hands. Good thing Janet Incompetano is on the job.
A man from West Africa who boarded a New York-bound flight in Senegal was added to the no-fly list while the plane was already heading over the Atlantic Ocean, according to a passenger on the flight and two sources with knowledge of the situation, Fox News Channel reported Thursday.

On Wednesday night, Delta Airlines Flight 215 departed Abuja, Nigeria, stopping later in Dakar, Senegal, before heading for John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York, according to Delta's website.

The plane made an unplanned stop in Puerto Rico.

Delta's website said the plane was "diverted," but a statement from Customs and Border Protection (CBP) called it a "routine refueling stop."

"The plane did not have enough gas to make it to New York because of the winds," one of the passengers on the plane, Joan Mower, told Fox News. "It was a small plane, and it was strong winds ... we couldn't make it direct from Dakar to New York."

After the re-fueling, there was "big sort of kerfuffle," said Mower, who works for Voice of America and was on her way home from a week-long business trip in Nigeria.

CBP officers boarded the plane and removed a person described in a CBP statement as a "potential person of interest."

"Then the pilot came on and said, 'We've been delayed some more, because there was someone who got on the plane, and we were just told they added him to the no-fly list after he was on the plane'," Mower said.

In fact, Mower said, the pilot described it as "a serious security risk."

Mower was unable to see the man who was taken off the plane, she said.

Two sources confirmed to Fox News that the man in question, a citizen of Gambia, had been added to the no-fly list while Flight 215 was in the air.

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