Reports: plane lands safely after hijack threat

/ Source: The Associated Press

A passenger threatened to blow up a Moscow-bound airliner and demanded it change course but was overpowered and the plane landed safely, Russian news agencies reported Friday.

The plane, belonging to the Russian low-fare airline Sky Express, was flying from the Black Sea resort city of Sochi when a passenger demanded it head to Vienna, according to the ITAR-Tass news agency citing airline spokesman Vitaly Korenyugin.

The Interfax agency, citing an unidentified law enforcement source, said that the passenger shouted "Allahu Akhbar" and threatened to blow up the Boeing 737 with about 130 people aboard. Sky Express and Russian law-enforcement officials could not immediately be reached for comment by The Associated Press.

Reports said the man was overpowered by people aboard the plane, but there were no immediate details. There were no immediate reports of injuries.

Mental illness record
The RIA-Novosti news agency quoted an unnamed representative of the Federal Security Service as saying the disruptive passenger had been identified and that he was believed to have a record of mental illness.

The plane landed at Moscow's Vnukovo Airport about a half-hour behind schedule and security officers were evacuating the passengers, the reports said.

On Oct. 15, a drunken passenger claiming to have a bomb tried to hijack a Russia-bound Turkish Airlines flight, but passengers overpowered him and the plane landed safely in St. Petersburg.