American Airlines mechanic accused of sabotage will remain behind bars
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[September 19, 2019]
(Reuters) - A U.S. federal judge on
Wednesday ordered that an American Airlines mechanic charged with
purposely damaging an aircraft that was due to take off from Miami with
150 aboard remain behind bars before a trial, court papers showed.
Abdul-Majeed Marouf Ahmed Alani, who is no longer employed by American,
is a flight risk and a danger to the community, the court said. The
incident occurred in July.
According to local media, U.S. Magistrate Judge Chris McAliley cited new
evidence of potential terrorism sympathies when denying bail, including
videos on Alani's cellphone depicting Islamic State mass murders.
However, court papers on Wednesday did not show any change in the charge
against Alani, a U.S. citizen, to suggest any link to terrorism.
"We are cooperating with federal authorities in this investigation. The
safety of our customers and team members remains our top priority,"
American Airlines said in a statement.
When law enforcement officials interviewed Alani after his arrest, he
claimed he was upset over stalled labor talks and that he had tampered
with the aircraft hoping that a delay or cancellation would lead to
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Pilots aborted the take-off after receiving an error message and no
one was injured.
American's mechanics have not had a joint contract since the carrier
merged with U.S. Airways in 2013. Both sides are talking before a
mediator this week in Washington.
The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration said last week that it had
revoked Alani's mechanic certificate.
(Reporting by David Shepardson in Washington and Tracy Rucinski in
Chicago; Editing by Marguerita Choy and Matthew Lewis)
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