easyJet flight diverted after student makes hoax bomb threat to avoid seeing his parents

The young man went to extreme lengths to get out of a family visit

Helen Coffey
Wednesday 23 January 2019 18:38 GMT
(AFP/Getty )

A flight from Lyon to Rennes in France was diverted after a hoax bomb threat was called in by a young man who wanted to avoid seeing his parents.

The student from Rennes made an anonymous call, which led easyJet flight EZY4319 on 18 January to turn around and land at Lyon.

“The author of the facts has been identified,” the public prosecutor of Rennes said in a statement, adding that it was a 23-year-old student based in Rennes who did not want his parents, onboard the plane, to visit him.

The man was placed in custody, according to Airlive, and will appear at criminal court on 21 May, charged with “false news compromising the safety of an aircraft in flight”.

If prosecuted, he could be fined €75,000 and imprisoned for up to five years.

An easyJet spokesperson confirmed to The Independent that flight EZY4319 from Lyon to Rennes on 18 January returned to Lyon as a result of security related issue.

“The captain took the decision as a precaution only,” they said.

“The aircraft landed safely and was met by the fire brigade and the police in line with procedures. Passengers disembarked normally and were provided with information and refreshments.”

The flight was operated on the evening of 18 January by a replacement aircraft and crew from London Luton. The aircraft was cleared by the authorities, although the crew were not fit to fly and no replacement crew were available in Lyon.

The easyJet flight returned to Lyon
The easyJet flight returned to Lyon (AirNav)

“The safety and wellbeing of our passengers and crew is easyJet’s highest priority,” the spokesperson added.

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