Flight 772 returns to Toronto after passenger threatens bomb
Two American fighter jets escorted Sunwing Flight 772 which was on route to West Virginia back to Toronto after a 25 year old man became extremely agitated and started ranting about his home country. The video below shows a SWAT team board the plane on the tarmac and order the 183 passengers to put their heads down and hands up as the plane is cleared.
The Canadian man on board the passenger flight Sunwing 772 which was cruising above West Virginia threatened to bomb Canada itself and forced the pilot to make the decision to turn around
Flight 772 was only 45 minutes into its Friday morning flight to Panama City when Ali Shahi began ranting and “made a direct threat against the aircraft,” an airline spokesperson said in a statement.
Two F-16 fighter jets on a training run outside Toledo, Ohio, were scrambled to escort the plane carrying 183 passengers and 6 crew members back to Toronto’s Pearson International Airport, CBC News reported.
“We heard him speaking, we heard him yelling. He was being pretty belligerent, using a lot of cuss words,” Phil Thompson told Global News. “He said he didn’t care what happened to the plane or the people on it and he didn’t like Canada and didn’t care about Canada. He didn’t care about the consequences of his actions, he literally didn’t care if the plane went down.”
Local SWAT team boarded the jet after it landed just before 9am local time and cleared the plane while arresting the suspect.
The man’s father who remained unnamed, told CBC News that his son has dealt with mental health issues.
“I am sorry for what happened on the flight, but Ali is not at fault,” he told the news outlet. “I blame the police and health system. We called the police for help more than 23 times in the last two to three years, but unfortunately they did nothing to help us or help my son.”
The shaken passengers were rebooked on a later flight to Panama City.