Thursday, September 22, 2005

Jet emergency faked so fans can watch soccer

Crew claims to be low on fuel, lands to let Gambian passengers see match
LIMA, Peru: The crew of a chartered jet pretended they needed to make an emergency landing so 289 Gambian soccer fans on board could watch their team compete in a youth soccer championship, officials said Wednesday.
The plane, claiming to be low on fuel, landed Tuesday in Peru's northern coast city of Piura where the FIFA Under 17 World Championship was taking place.
"It truly was a scam," said Betty Maldonado, a spokeswoman for Peru's aviation authority, CORPAC. "They tricked the control tower, saying they were low on fuel."...Emergency crews were scrambled ahead of the unscheduled landing...The Air Rum plane, which she said was chartered by Gambian President Yahya Jammeh, should have made its approach to the capital, Lima, but instead flew directly to Piura, entering Peruvian airspace


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