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Fighter jets escort Toronto flight after alleged threat

Published on Jul 26, 2014 2:38 AM

OTTAWA (AFP) - A flight carrying Canadians on vacation to Panama was turned around and escorted back to Toronto by two fighter jets on Friday after an unruly passenger made threats against the aircraft.

Flight 772 carrying 181 passengers and six crew turned around approximately 45 minutes into the flight as it passed over West Virginia, a spokeswoman for the Sunwing airline said.

Captain Jennifer Stadnyk at North American Aerospace Defence Command said two F16 fighter jets were diverted to escort the jetliner back to Toronto, where it landed safely and the passenger was arrested by police.

Video taken by other passengers and circulated online showed officers in body armour and helmets boarding the plane with weapons drawn.

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