Apr 23 2010
[UPDATE ADDED] GUESS THE RELIGION: U.S. detains passenger on Senegal-to-New York flight during stopover in Puerto Rico
U.S. authorities detained a “person of interest” on an Africa-to-New York flight during a fuel stop in Puerto Rico, without disclosing why the person was held or giving any details. Gee, I wonder why?
THE RELIGION OF SENEGAL is predominantly Muslim, with up to 90% of the population practicing the basic tenets of Islam. The remaining 10% is made up of Christians and those that practice traditional religions, with many combining the latter two.
SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico (AP) — The U.S. Customs and Border Protection agency issued a statement identifying the passenger only as a “potential person of interest,” who was removed from the Delta Air Lines flight for further questioning and remained in custody. Spokeswoman Jenny Burke declined to provide details. Delta said it received a request from the government to board and remove the passenger during the refueling stop in Puerto Rico. There was no incident on board the plane, passengers were not in any danger and the flight continued to New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport afterward, said Delta spokeswoman Susan Chana Elliott. Flight 215 was traveling from Dakar, Senegal, in West Africa to John F. Kennedy International Airport when it diverted to San Juan, Puerto Rico, to refuel. LINK
UPDATE: MAN ADDED TO ‘NO-FLY’ LIST WHILE AIRBORNE!
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.
On Wednesday night, Delta Airlines Flight 215 departed from 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 called it a “routine refueling stop.”
After the refueling, there was a “big sort of kerfuffle,” said Joan 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 what the CBP statement called 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.”
“The question for Homeland Security, I think, is ‘Why was the guy allowed to get on the plane in [Africa], and then added to the no-fly list while the plane was in the air?,'” 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.
The man had already been on the Terrorist Identities Datamart Environment list, which is comprised of more than 500,000 people with even limited ties to known terrorists, one source said.
In addition, one source said, in the aftermath of the attempted Christmas Day bombing, being added to the no-fly list is sometimes a precaution, rather than an indication of a present threat. In this case, the FBI received a tip from someone shortly before Flight 215 left for the United States, according to one source.
As of Thursday evening, the man was still in the custody of CBP. Authorities had yet to find anything to corroborate the claim that he posed a threat, but the investigation is ongoing. FOX NEWS