Later it was reported in the incisive and hard-hitting local rag The Times of Oman that the person had been caught and had also confessed.
Reliable sources now tell me the person was actually a female Omani national, who was… wait for it… one of the cabin crew on the flight.
File Photo: The usual suspects
Actually, perhaps not as surprising as you’d think.
A similar incident occured in March this year on an Emirates Flight to London, and in May the culprit – again a member of the crew – was jailed for 18 months in the UK. The case is eerily almost identical to the Oman Air incident, with a threatening note left in the bathroom. (see story below)
Omani detectives are not stupid, and it would seem that in cases like this, the first suspects are the crew themselves (similar I guess to when someone is murdered, and the spouse is always suspect no. 1).
No word on sentencing in the Oman Air case yet.
Flight attendant jailed in UK for Emirates bomb hoax
Tuesday, 26 May 2009
BOMB HOAX: Am Emirates flight from Dubai to London was at the centre of a bomb hoax in March at London's Gatwick Airport. (Getty Images)A flight attendant was jailed for 18 months last Thursday for leaving a bomb hoax note on board an Emirates aircraft he was working on and sparking a scare that led to London's Gatwick Airport briefly closing.
Australian national Matthew Carney, 24, left a message in the toilet of a flight from Dubai to London in March which read: "Explosive material can be found in the FWD (forward cargo department). We have the Taliban to thank for this."
A passenger on board the Boeing 777 found the note 10 minutes before the plane was due to land and raised the alarm.
When the flight arrived at Gatwick it was taken to a secure holding area and surrounded by armed police.
The 164 passengers and 16 crew were taken off the plane and interviewed and Carney was arrested shortly afterwards.
He pleaded guilty to communicating false information, namely a bomb hoax, at Lewes Crown Court, police said.
The court was told that earlier in the flight Carney told his co-workers he had "found" wires hanging down from behind a mirror in a toilet in the economy section, the Press Association reported.
But senior cabin crew members who inspected the area found the wires were not attached to anything and the plane carried on to Britain.
Prosecutor Dale Sullivan said that because of the earlier incident, Carney was arrested and his luggage searched.
Inside a pair of his shorts was found a piece of paper with the words "Cargo contains explosives," which handwriting experts linked to the note left in the toilet.
His lawyer Andel Singh said Carney had been under a great deal of stress and was "extremely tired" at the time having worked on flights on different time schedules throughout the world.
"He apologizes wholeheartedly and sincerely to all those individuals who were even the slightest bit inconvenienced," Singh said.
Sullivan said the hoax had left Emirates with a bill for 42,000 pounds ($66,340) for arranging ongoing flights and other measures, while some passengers were left with a fear of flying and said they would never set foot on an aircraft again. (Reuters)
And to lighten up your weekend, a correspondent forwarded me this link to the website Despots Anonymous. A familiar looking Persian is the latest to join the list. Funny piece.
Hello, I am Ali and I really want to be a despot.
June 24, 2009 at 7:01 am
I’m trying hard, so help me, I really am, but it’s hard to get good help these days.
I thought we had that election all sewn up, but oy vey, that Mahmoud couldn’t steal candy from a baby, he’s so clueless. What a shemozzle. Now I have to come out from behind the veil and tell everybody straight out “That’s it, you know me, I wouldn’t cheat you, all over red rover.”
But those people in the streets, they’re so rude. That’s what I can’t forgive, they’re so rude, saying they don’t believe me no more. Okay, so we have to say that yes there was maybe a little bit of fraud, but not so much to change the result.
I like that bit. That bit I’m thinking was very clever, neh? “Eleven millions,” I say, “how could we steal eleven millions? Maybe you think we could steal a million or two, but eleven is way too many.”
That’s such a clever argument, they’ll never see through that one.
So now we’ve won the election, I have some problems I’d like some help on. Not so much problems maybe, just issues, you know. We despots don’t have problems, of course, just brilliant solutions that we haven’t shown yet.
So here’s the real issue. My economy is going down the toilet. Bad, bad, bad I’m thinking. Poor old Mahmoud, sweet guy, great schtick on blaming everybody else, but really not so smart when it comes to the money. We’re spending so much paying other people to fight our battles, but where’s the cost-benefit analysis? And building peaceful nuclear power is not cheap, you know what I mean?
Also, I hate that I need educated people so much, and they’re a real lippy bunch. But if you want to build nukes you need a few people who know how things go together. So how do I get people who know what’s what, when I don’t want people who know what’s what. Know what I mean?