PHILADELPHIA, PENNSYLVANIA – A US Airways flight on its way to Dallas returned to Philadelphia on Thursday for security reasons, which later turned out to be a hoax, authorities said.
Investigators took a passenger into custody, but police later said that an investigation determined that there was no security threat.
“All indications are that this was hoax and a pretty nasty trick was played on this passenger,” said Philadelphia Police Chief Inspector Joseph Sullivan.
He said someone called Philadelphia police and identified a passenger who the caller said was carrying a potentially explosive substance. No dangerous material was uncovered, police said.
Flight 1267 landed at Philadelphia International Airport, and authorities began a security check while passengers remained on the plane, airline spokesman Davien Anderson said.
Richard Quinn, assistant FBI special agent in charge, told reporters that making false calls affecting a commercial airline is a federal offense and it is expected that the caller will be prosecuted.
Authorities say the Airbus A319, which was carrying 69 passengers, was cleared after all passengers were removed.