An American Airlines mechanic has been arrested after being accused of sabotaging a plane with 150 passengers headed for the Bahamas from Miami, Florida.
The Daily Mail reports he sabotaged the engine of the plane over allegedly being upset over stalled contract negotiations.
Abdul-Majeed Marouf Ahmed Alani is claimed to have glued foam inside a tube that would disable navigation systems in an aircraft at Miami International Airport, in Florida.
The veteran employee allegedly tampered with the plane to cause a delay or have the flight canceled ‘in anticipation of obtaining overtime,’ Miami Herald reported.
Luckily no passengers were injured on the flight set for Nassau, Bahamas, on July 17, because an alert was triggered as the pilot powered up the plane’s engines.
Alani was arrested and is due to appear at Miami Federal court on Friday charged with ‘willfully damaging, destroying or disabling an aircraft.’
The criminal complaint was launched after TSA federal air marshals claim to have identified Alani, while reviewing video footage.
Three other AA mechanics, who were with him during the claimed attack, allegedly helped investigators to identify Alani, who walks with a limp.
American Airlines released the following statement Friday morning:
“On July 17, flight 2834 from Miami to Nassau, Bahamas, returned to the gate due to a maintenance issue. Passengers boarded a new aircraft which then re-departed for Nassau. At American we have an unwavering commitment to the safety and security of our customers and team members and we are taking this matter very seriously. At the time of the incident, the aircraft was taken out of service, maintenance was performed and after an inspection to ensure it was safe the aircraft was returned to service. American immediately notified federal law enforcement who took over the investigation with our full cooperation.”
According to what’s being reported by the Miami Herald, the sabotaging of the engine of an airplane in a United States airport was not related to terrorism. But how safe are our U.S. airports from employees who may be interested in committing acts of terror in their workplace?
According to WND – The fact that a Somali Muslim war criminal booted from Canada could somehow land a job at Dulles International Airport in Washington, D.C., appears shocking on its face – but at least six dozen other employees with suspected terror links have been caught working at U.S. airports.
In 2016, a CNN investigation found that Yusuf Abdi Ali, who is accused of committing atrocities while he was a military commander during Somalia’s civil war, has been living a quiet suburban life in posh Alexandria, Virginia, for about 20 years, CNN reported.
Documents obtained through a Freedom of Information Act request in March reveal 73 people employed by major airlines at 40 airports nationwide were flagged for potential ties to terrorism.
Terrorism-linked employees have also been flagged at Boston’s Logan International Airport, Seattle’s Sea Tac Airport, Denver International Airport, Honolulu International Airport, Dallas Love Field, San Francisco International Airport, and Los Angeles International Airport, among others.
These employees were not properly vetted because the TSA said it did not have full access to terrorist databases during their hiring, according to an Inspector General’s report.
“Without complete and accurate information, TSA risks credentialing and providing unescorted access to secure airport areas for workers with potential to harm the nation’s air transportation system,” the report found.
In 2014, three Somali “refugees” with ties to either ISIS and/or al-Shabab were arrested after it was discovered they had plans to travel overseas and fight with the terrorist organizations. All three had security clearances for jobs at Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport that allowed them to go into areas travelers were not allowed, Fox 9 reported.
While the story about Abdul-Majeed Marouf Ahmed Alani sabatoging the plane appears to not be terror related, it certainly doesn’t mean Americans should feel 100% secure in U.S. airports.