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The Region

November 23, 1986

A Los Angeles family that was aboard a Pan American World Airways jumbo jetliner hijacked in Pakistan on Sept. 5 has filed a $100-million lawsuit against the airline, contending that airline officials ignored warnings that a terrorist attack in the region was likely. The lawsuit, thought to be the first in California filed in connection with the hijacking, also said Pan Am officials failed to take proper precautions to protect their passengers against a hijacking, though customers had paid an extra $10 on their tickets for just such security measures. George Mathai, 45, his wife, Mary, and two daughters, Priti, 8, and Priya, age 3 months, were returning to Los Angeles from a vacation in Bombay when the aircraft was commandeered. Mathai was shot in the back and buttocks when he tried to shield his family as four Palestinian gunmen opened fire, killing nineteen passengers and wounding another 120. All of the terrorists were captured.

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