An American Airlines mechanic has been charged with sabotaging an airliner with 150 people aboard, causing it to abort a planned flight seconds before takeoff.
Abdul-Majeed Marouf Ahmed Alani was arrested Thursday and charged with “willfully damaging, destroying, disabling, or wrecking an aircraft … and attempting to do so,” after allegedly admitting to investigators on Thursday that he had tampered with a crucial part of American Airlines Flight 2834’s navigation system on July 17. The plane was taking off from Miami International Airport, bound for the Bahamas.
Alani, who investigators identified using surveillance footage, admitted he had glued a piece of foam into the flight’s navigation system, according to an affidavit submitted to a Florida district court Thursday.
He told investigators his “intention was not to cause harm to the aircraft or its passengers.” If the navigation system had been fully disabled, pilots would have had to operate the plane manually without data on speed and pitch.
He said he tampered with the plane in the hopes of being called on to fix it––securing more overtime, prosecutors alleged.