Former Flight Attendant Admits To Making False Bomb Threats
Bomb threats to an airline, whether false or serious, will cause significant disruptions to thousands, even millions, of travelers. A costly series of pranks by Patrick Cau, a former disgruntled United Airlines flight attendant did just that. Cau plead guilty to making eight false bomb threats against the airline that started last October, and continued for four more months.
According to Reuters, the plea agreement that was eventually reached with federal prosecutors alleged that the threats cost United more than $267,000. In early October, Cau phoned an internal United number to inform officials that a flight from London to Los Angeles would be bombed. For many of the other instances, he would call 911 from pay phones and make similar bomb threats in New York, Seattle, Las Vegas and Los Angeles. As a result of his conviction, the former American Airlines flight attendant trainee is due to be sentenced in November and could face five years in jail for this series of elaborate hoaxes.
According to the Courthouse News Service, Cau worked for United Airlines for 15 years, and even worked his way up the ladder to become head flight attendant. He then began to train for American Airlines, but was fired in April after he showed up on a no-fly list.CNN reported that Cau's attorney stated that his client filed a sexual harassment complaint while working with United, and became dissatisfied with the way the company handled the situation. United fired Cau after an incident with a passenger. Cau was indicted in May and is currently being forced to pay back the damages that cost United Airlines so much money, as well as an undisclosed amount to the agencies who responded to the bomb threats.
During all of the bomb threat incidents, officials were forced to evacuate planes, re-screen passengers and search bags and cargo. Not only did the bomb threat calls inhibit law enforcement officers from doing their jobs, they also resulted in major delays and cancellations for travelers.
Whether real or a hoax, no one wants to experience a bomb threat. No one wants to have their flight delayed or cancelled altogether, to have their plans disrupted because of a prank. Thankfully, no one was physically harmed by these calls, but this case is a clear reminder why trip insurance is a viable part of travel. A travel insurance plan could help protect you from unexpected events such as this.
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Submitted on: 2013-11-29 19:21:40