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16-year-old gets 14 months for making bomb hoax

A 16-year-old boy who joked that he had planted a liquid bomb on a plane from Shanghai to Chongqing was sentenced to 14 months in prison today by the Changning District People's Court for making a terrorism hoax.

Liu Rui called the customer service hotline of the Hongqiao International Airport via the Internet on the evening of October 12 last year after having a quarrel with his father, prosecutors said.

Liu said he made the joke to vent his anger and picked up a flight randomly on the Internet. The airport staff warned Liu that he might be held liable for making a terrorism hoax but Liu calmly suggested them to check the plane and then hang up, the court heard.

A few hours later, Liu turned himself in to police in Wuxi, Jiangsu Province after he realized the severity of his act. However, the hoax had caused a financial loss of 100,000 yuan (US$16,090) as the airport ordered the plane to return to Shanghai for a check.

A bomb squad was sent to search the plane and all luggage, which lasted for more than an hour.
Liu was given a light punishment for being an underage. According to the Chinese Law, those who fabricate terrorism information would be jailed for up to five years in prison. The punishment will be even harsher if the criminal act leads to a serious consequence.


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