TEMPO.CO, Jakarta - The Transportation Ministry responded to an incident on board a Lion Air plane last week, when a passenger joked about carrying a bomb. The incident caused delay and the passenger in question was eventually kicked off from the flight.
The ministry's air transportation director general Polana B. Pramesti said the passengers will be prosecuted and banned from flying.
"He can face criminal charges for violating the Aviation Law," Polana said in a press conference, Sunday, April 21.
Polana said the passengers will be blacklisted by airlines as well.
A Lion Air passenger with the initials MT had joked to a cabin crew, saying that he was carrying a bomb in his cabin baggage. As a result, the Medan-to-Jakarta flight number JT-303 had to be delayed and was forced to take off two hours later than scheduled.
The incident happened on Saturday, April 20 at the Kualanamu International Airport in North Sumatra. MT was finally taken off the plane and was forbidden to fly. He was then handed over to the police by airport security.
Last year, a man in Pontianak made the same joke. He has been sentenced guilty and given eight years in prison.