Justice Department to ramp up prosecution of unruly airline passengers

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Justice Department directed US lawyers on Wednesday prioritized the prosecution of airline passengers who committed federal crimes on the plane.

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why it matters: This statement of the department has come amid the increase in incidents of unruly passengers. Federal Aviation Administration Reporting over 5,000 incidents this year.

  • The FAA and DOJ established an information-sharing protocol in August “to ensure that the department is notified of criminal conduct occurring on commercial aircraft,” according to the release.
  • Attorney General Merrick Garland reiterated that federal law prohibits assault, intimidation and threats of violence, adding that such conduct “puts everyone in danger.”

What are they saying: Passengers who “harm flight crew and flight attendants … prevent the performance of critical duties that help ensure safe air travel,” Garland said in a statement.

  • “The Department of Justice is committed to using its resources to prevent violence, intimidation, threats of violence … that endanger the safety of passengers, flight crew and flight attendants,” he said.
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