A China Airlines (CAL) flight from Beijing to Taipei was delayed by nearly two hours yesterday after a passenger claimed while boarding that he had a bomb in his luggage.
Flight CI512, originally scheduled to depart Beijing at 12:25pm, took off from Beijing Capital International Airport at about 2:20pm after further security checks were conducted and no explosive device was found, CAL authorities in Taipei said.
The flight, with 351 passengers on board, arrived at Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport at 5:15pm.
According to the carrier’s office in Beijing, a Chinese man, aged 70, who is a US passport holder, was unhappy that the flight had been delayed because of heavy traffic at Beijing airport.
The man, surnamed Zhang (張), said while taking his first-class seat that he was carrying a bomb in his luggage.
The attendants immediately alerted the captain.
In response, airport authorities ordered all luggage — not only that belonging to Zhang and his wife — to be removed from the aircraft for safety checks.
The couple were ordered to disembark from the aircraft and detained for questioning. The CAL flight then departed for Taipei.
Sean Lien (連勝文), a son of former vice president Lien Chan (連戰), and his wife were among the passengers. Sean Lien survived a gunshot wound to the face at an election rally in then-Taipei County in November last year.