View Full Version : Old hijack attempt - crew killed hijacker ?

5th Oct 2009, 19:14
I heard a curious tale of an attempted hijack of a flight where the aircrew overpowered and killed the hijacker. I guess it would have been major news at the time, but I can't find anything on the internet. The person didn't say when it occured, but having known one of the people involved (now dead) who worked for BOAC, it would have been in the 50's 60's or 70's on BOAC or possibly I know they were 'hired out' (if thats the right description) crew on ANZ and possibly others.

Is there any truth to it ?

6th Oct 2009, 05:18
there was an event i saw re-enacted on one of those american air disaster shows where a mentally unstable bloke working for Fed-Ex or something in the 80s deliberately tried to bring down an aircraft. he caught a jump seat flight somewhere and tried to kill the air crew. they fought back and killed him after a rather bloody battle in the cockpit. i think the pilot bashed the bloke to death with a spanner or something. quite gruesome. he was aircrew himself and had written a sucide note.

so the story went, anyway ...

sled dog
6th Oct 2009, 07:28
Nick10, i have seen the same programme you mentioned. From what i remember the assailant was not killed. But rather bloodily subdued after badly injuring ( with a crash axe ? ) the Captain. A/c was safely landed, and the person taken into custody. A lengthy jail term followed, probably life. I cannot remember if he was a F/O or F/E.

6th Oct 2009, 07:53
A really gruesome Air Crash Investigation. The wikipedia entry has the story:
FedEx Flight 705 - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/FedEx_Flight_705)

6th Oct 2009, 08:33
Not BOAC. There might have been a case in NZ involving a smaller aircraft about 8 years ago?

6th Oct 2009, 09:37
There was also an attempted hijacking in Australia several decades ago now where the highjacker was killed on the tarmac. Think it was at Alice Springs and it was the police who killed the man.:uhoh:

As a completely irrelevent aside, it was also at Alice Springs where a deranged pilot flew a Baron into his former employers building killing 3 or 4 occupants.:mad:

7th Oct 2009, 16:25
ASN Aircraft accident Airbus A300? Xiamen Airport (XMN) (http://aviation-safety.net/database/record.php?id=19971222-2)
ASN Aircraft accident Boeing 737 Jinan (http://aviation-safety.net/database/record.php?id=20000927-1)

7th Oct 2009, 16:46
Back in the late 60's or early 70's a PanAm 747 was hijacked in the Far East Asian area. If I remember correctly the 747 landed at Saigon. There was a US police officer on board just as a passenger, however, he was armed with his service revolver. After landing the Captain borrowed the weapon from the policeman, then shot and killed the hijacker and then threw the body of the hijacker out of one of the aft cabin doors.

I cannot remember much in the way of details of this incident, but I do remember seeing a photo of the body laying on the ramp with the Captain looking down out of the aft cabin door at the hijacker's body.

Perhaps someone here can remember more details.

7th Oct 2009, 17:38
I remember the hijacking of a Japanese B727 back in the early 1970s. It was on a domestic flight when four or five leftwing extremists drew samurai swords and the a/c ended up in Pyongyang.

It seems they persuaded checkin staff that they were actors and the swords got aboard as carry-ons.

The a/c got repatriated pretty quickly and I don't remember what happened to the entrepreneurial quintet but I do remember the cartoon in The Observer the next day: it showed CC and samurais in full regalia having it out with swords in the middle of the aisle amid a sea of terrified passengers.

The caption read: "Other airlines only show films."

9th Oct 2009, 15:53
I met an Egypt Air B767 training captain some years ago, when they did their simulator training with Britannia Airways at Luton. A friendlier, more polite gentleman you could not hope to meet. Earlier in his career, when a 737 captain, his aircraft was hijacked and forced to land in Malta. He killed the hijacker with the cockpit fire axe. Could this be the incident you were referring to?

9th Oct 2009, 19:43
Thanks for the replies. I've not really got much info. to go on and having searched ASN I can't find anything.

10th Oct 2009, 08:51
Also Air NZ in Nadi during the first Coup. The FE hit him with a bottle of duty free scotch.The hijacker didn't die but was very badly injured. The legend goes that the FE was upset as the police kept the scotch.
However the whole event was on the ground so it may not fit your criteria

10th Oct 2009, 09:38
There is Leila Khaled, subject of a recent film that featured at the Sundance Festival

G2: Profile of Palestinian fighter Leila Khaled | World news | The Guardian (http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2001/jan/26/israel)

Interview with the film director:
Qantara.de - Hijacker ? The Life of Leila Khaled (http://www.qantara.de/webcom/show_article.php/_c-310/_nr-258/i.html)

Film website:
Leila Khaled - Hijacker (http://www.leilakhaled.com/)

Review quotes:
“Leila Khaled Hijacker is a fascinating journey of a woman”
Jewish Independent
“An astonishing testimony on violence and femininity is born from the meeting
held between the two women in Amman, in the house of Leila Khaled.”
Le monde diplomatique
“A so much upsetting film it stirs up in us a powerful emotion.”
La Presse
”Lina Makboul´s documentary is a small masterpiece”
Dagens Nyheter

27th Dec 2009, 04:03
I was aboard the Pan Am flight that was mentioned by Con-Pilot. It was a chartered military R&R flight. I was returning from R&R and witnessed all that went on, up to and including when the pilot dragged the hijacker to the door and threw him out. I have only recently decided to search for info on this event and so far this is the only mention I have found on the internet.

27th Dec 2009, 16:36
I seem to remember a story about an Ethiopian Airline where hijacker(s)? were over powered and dispatched on the spot.
This could have been in 1972. Some of the Google responses say that onboard guards killed all the hijackers but don't really say how. I seem to recall some stories that said that some of the overpowered hijackers were "summarily" executed, not sure if that can be verified though.

27th Dec 2009, 17:33
Not the subject of this initial post presumably, but an example of hijacking revenge. The Captain killed a fifteen year old hijacker on an American Airlines DC-6B in 1954.

ASN Aircraft accident Douglas DC-6B N90773 Cleveland, OH (http://aviation-safety.net/database/record.php?id=19540706-0)

Mod Note

In fairness to Capt Bonnell, the following are provided to correct the misrepresentations made above.

Pistol served pilot well in '54 | Houston & Texas News | Chron.com - Houston Chronicle (http://www.chron.com/disp/story.mpl/metropolitan/1087467.html#finalframe)

From a seperate article:

Five minutes prior to takeoff from Hopkins Airport in Cleveland, Ohio, a huge white male burst into the flight cabin of an American Airlines jetliner captained by William F. Bonnell. Weighing some 280 lbs., looking even larger in a leather jacket, the intruder wielded a revolver. “Fly to Mexico or be shot,” he commanded the pilot.

Bonnell’s hand dropped down beside his leg, discreetly, to his flight bag. And his hand closed on his revolver inside it.
“I shot him in the hip. He still had the gun. He sagged a bit. I let him have it again, a little higher,” the pilot said.

The second bullet had found the gunman’s chest. He fell, dropping the revolver. The hijacking was over. The date was July 6, 1954. The plane was a Douglas DC6 on a flight that had originated in New York City with stops in Cleveland, St. Louis, and Fort Worth en route to its final destination, Mexico City. The hijacker, Raymond A. Kuchenmeister, Jr., died an hour later at a local hospital.

Spooky 2
27th Dec 2009, 17:56
I have a freind that was a F/O on a TWA 707. I believe this happened on the ground at SFO. Unbeknown to the hi-jacker ther was an armed Brinks courier onboard the aircraft and I believe he shot, but did not kill the hi-jacker. This was in the late sixties as I recall

27th Dec 2009, 18:23
Re the Ethiopian one where one or more hijackers were killed.
I have a vague memory that the flight landed at Athens where the authorities told the captain to depart immediately and take the body with him.

29th Dec 2009, 01:34
innuendo/renfrew I seem to remember a story that the sky marshalls on the Ethiopian hijack attempt dragged the hijackers to the toilets and cut their throats!

29th Dec 2009, 01:46
My recollection of the story is that Ethiopean Airlines carried a security officer on board international flights in the 70's, because of the Eritrean uprising.

When the the hijacker(s??) tried to commandeer the airplane, the security guard collared him/them, asked the CC to clear the first class compartment and upgrade the perpertrator(s). He then drew the curtains, placed a towel around his/their necks and calmly slit his/their throat, without ruining the furniture or even disturbing the passengers in "Y".

I think it was written up in the contemporary Time magazine, if memory serves.

29th Dec 2009, 03:57
Para and twochai, that is the same story that I remember around the time.
I tried to find some confirmation through Google but came up blank.
Perhaps the details have since been kept to a low profile.

30th Dec 2009, 10:39
Pan Am Saigon hijack was 2 July 1972.

ABC news archive video of event here:

July 2, 1972: Hijack Thwarted - ABC News (http://abcnews.go.com/Video/playerIndex?id=5298231)

2nd Jan 2010, 10:24
Circa 1985, Cairo, SaudiArabian TriStar.
Hijacker entered the FD after landing, and decided to stab the Flight Engineer in the arm with a knife.
He did so, whereupon, said FE became slightly pi**ed off, and when the airplane was parked on stand, the FE grabbed the perp, opened the L1 door and kicked the malcontent firmly out onto the tarmac, whereupon said perp was dead on the spot from the fall.
Just as well, as the security dogs that arrived just at the moment chewed him to bits....just about enough left of the perp to fit into two shoe boxes.

True story.