What a case of bad timing!
A Boeing 737 plane took off from Tel Aviv on Tuesday but was forced to return when passengers on board received disturbing photographs of a plane crash.
When the photographs were submitted, the AndoluJet flight was scheduled to depart from Tel Aviv’s Ben Gurion Airport for Istanbul. It was not a cyberattack, according to an Israel Airports Authority spokesman.
Passengers and personnel were removed from the plane, and luggage was searched once more. A number of young Israelis have been identified as suspects and are currently being interrogated. After being cleared to leave, the airplane left five hours late.
The nine passengers suspected of being involved were taken off the plane, and they could face charges of false information propagation, which carries a maximum sentence of three years in Israel.
The plane was on its way to take off with 160 passengers on board when passengers informed the crew that they had received the photographs. After being notified, the captain chose to return to the terminal.
The photos were sent over AirDrop, an Apple feature that allows users to exchange files over short distances from one Apple device to another. According to sources, all of the photographs were received on iPhones. The images sent belonged to the wreckage of a Turkish Airlines jet that crashed in the Netherlands in February 2009.
“I am sure the police and the security authorities will find out why they (the suspects) did it,” Israel Airports Authority spokesman Ofer Lefler said.