Taipei: A Taiwanese-American man has been
detained in China after falsely claiming his luggage contained
explosives during a flight from Taipei to the eastern Chinese
city of Shanghai, Taiwanese police said Sunday.
Taiwan`s China Airlines had to divert the plane with
293 passengers and 22 crew on board to the Chinese city of
Hangzhou last morning after 68-year-old George Lin told the
cabin crew about the purported explosives.
China Airlines Spokesman Bruce Chen said no explosive
was found on board the plane after it was thoroughly searched
on landing in the Chinese city of Hangzhou, where Lin was
taken away for questioning by Chinese authorities.
After four hours on the ground, the plane continued on
to Shanghai and landed there without further incident.
Mao Kun-yi of Taiwan`s Aviation Police Office
confirmed Lin`s detention in China but could not confirm news
reports that Lin had made the claim about explosives in his
luggage as a joke.
Lin has US passport, but travelled to China alone on
his Taiwanese documents, Mao said. Lin has Chinese business
interests, he said, without elaborating.
Staff at the US Consulate in Shanghai said today that
they could not comment on the case or even confirm there had
been an arrest without the signing of a privacy waiver.
China and Taiwan began regular direct flights in 2008
after newly inaugurated Taiwanese President Ma Ying-jeou moved
to reverse his predecessor`s pro-independence policies in
favour of closer economic ties with the mainland. There are
now some 270 weekly flights between the sides.