Christopher Shell, a victim of a Philadelphia airplane explosives hoax,… (Dallas Fort Worth Airport…)
Christopher Shell celebrated his 29th birthday as the victim of a security hoax that forced authorities to order his flight back to Philadelphia. He celebrated the day after his birthday in custody in Texas on unrelated misdemeanor drug charges.
Shell was turned over to Collin County authorities in Texas on Friday morning, officials said. He was being held on two misdemeanor warrants, possession of a controlled substance and possession of less than two ounces of marijuana, Lt. John Norton said in a telephone interview with the Los Angeles Times.
Shell will be held pending the posting of $3,000 bond, the sheriff’s spokesman said.
Shell, who says on his Facebook page that he's from Keller, Texas, was traveling to Texas on Thursday when his U.S. Airways flight to Dallas was ordered back to Philadelphia, where Shell now lives. Authorities there had received a report that liquid explosives were on the flight.
The plane was searched and no explosives were found. Shell, who had been taken off of the plane to be questioned in connection with the tip, was described as the victim of a nasty hoax. Both he and the flight, which originally carried 74 passengers and crew members, were cleared and allowed to proceed to the Dallas-Fort Worth Airport.
But when Shell arrived at the Dallas airport, he was taken into custody by police on the outstanding warrants, according to David Magana, an airport spokesman. Shell was held at the airport jail overnight and turned over to Collin County officials at 9:30 a.m. Friday, Magana said.
According to Norton of the Collin County Sheriff’s Office, Shell was in the county jail in October 2011, and was probably released after posting bond. The warrants were issued weeks later, he said.
Normally Texas does not seek extradition of anyone wanted in connection with misdemeanor charges, so officials would not have pursued Shell in Philadelphia, Norton said.
No arrests have been made in the hoax that led the plane to return to Philadelphia.
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