Airline, authorities scramble after boy, 9, takes 2400km flight

By Jon Swaine

Photo / Thinkstock
Photo / Thinkstock

American transport officials are investigating how a 9-year-old boy got on a plane without a ticket and flew 2400km to Las Vegas.

The boy, who has not been named, got through three levels of security at Minneapolis-St Paul airport in Minnesota on Friday before boarding a Delta flight.

Police officers met the flight in Las Vegas after being contacted by suspicious flight crew members and transferred the boy, who is believed to have run away from home, to child protection officers.

Minnesota media said the boy also spent Thursday at the airport.

He is said to have taken another passenger's luggage from the baggage reclaim carousel and taken it to a restaurant in the check-in area.

While in the restaurant, the boy is reported to have asked a waiter to watch the bag while he went to the lavatory. However, he did not return.

The incident was reported to the Transportation Security Administration, whose gate agents screened the boy for security before allowing him into the departure area.

It was also reported to the Minneapolis police and the Hennepin County attorney's office.

The boy was returned to the Minneapolis-St Paul area. His parents are reported to be co-operating with investigators.

A spokesman for Delta said: "We are investigating the incident and co-operating with the agencies involved." A spokesman for the airport stressed: "This is a rare incident."

- Daily Telegraph UK

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