Two men accused of being responsible for a mid air drama after alleged threats to blow up an airliner have pleaded not guilty to making false threats endangering the safety of the aircraft.
Supermarket employee Tayyab Subhani (30), of Townley Street, Brierfield and restaurant worker Mohammed Safdar (41), of Hallam Crescent, Nelson, were remanded for trial until November 11th at Chelmsford Crown Court.
When they appeared at the court Judge Christopher Ball QC continued bail for Subhani. An application for bail was to be made on behalf of Safdar.
Both men have denied communicating false information on May 24th that the crew and passengers would be killed and the aircraft blown up before landing.
The Pakistan International Airways flight PK709, carrying 308 passengers and 14 crew from Lahore to Manchester, was diverted to Stansted Airport in Essex 10 minutes before it was due to land at Manchester. During the flight to Stansted it was shadowed by an RAF Typhoon fighter jet.
Married father-of-three Safdar and part-time taxi driver Subhani, who were flying home after attending Safdar’s mother’s funeral, were arrested when armed police went on board at Stansted.