The Straits Times
Published on Oct 24, 2012

Italian detained in Bali over hoax bomb threat to flight


YOGYAKARTA (AFP) - An Italian painter has been arrested on the Indonesian resort island of Bali for allegedly making a hoax bomb threat to a flight after his wife failed to get a seat on it, police said on Wednesday.

Mr Andrea Giovanni Sorteni, 48, could be charged with terrorism offences over the bomb threat, which sparked panic and caused the flight from Yogyakarta in central Java to be delayed by several hours.

Indonesia has been hit by deadly bombings over the past decade and the hoax came at a sensitive time - two days after Bali marked the 10th anniversary of Islamist attacks that killed 202 people, including many foreign tourists.

The artist, who denies making the threat, became upset when his Indonesian wife was not allowed on the flight after low-cost domestic carrier Lion Air said her ticket was out of date, according to police.