An American Airlines flight slated to depart LAX for London took off Monday after being delayed overnight in part because of a WiFi network that had been named "Al-Quida Free Terror Nettwork." [sic]
Around 10 p.m. Sunday night, a passenger on board an airplane that had already pushed away from the gate reported that his phone had picked up the network, according to a statement from Los Angeles Airport police.
"You know, I didn't believe (it)," said Yoram ben Ami, the passenger who alerted employees. "I said 'What is this? What is this.'"
Ami reported what he saw to a flight attendant.
"We know all about this. We all know Al-Qaeda," he said.
The plane sat on the tarmac for three hours. Some said they were terrified.
"We were told to sit down. We weren't allowed to move. We couldn't do anything," said passenger Laura Cook.
The plane was returned to the gate, and the hot spot was investigated by Air Marshals, Homeland Security and U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers. Investigators said the hotspot, with the name of the terror organization misspelled, could have come from nearby the airport or in the terminal. Even if someone operating the hot spot had been located, the right to name the WiFi device is lively protected by free speech.
Police said it was determined no crime had been committed and there will be no further investigation.