Planet China

Stowaway

Two years ago a 15 year-old shocked airport security experts by sneaking into a Boeing-767 and surviving a six hour flight to Hawaii in the plane’s wheel well. Over in China a strangely similar case also came to light late last month. According to Chengdu Business Daily a 16 year-old from Sichuan managed to hide inside the cargo hold of an A380 aircraft bound for Dubai. Identified by his surname Xu, he was captured on arrival by local police and taken into custody for questioning. Xu claimed that he’d read stories on Chinese websites claiming that Dubai was a “city paved with gold” where even beggars could earn up to Rmb470,000 ($71,635) per month. He told police he’d hopped the fence at Shanghai’s main airport – and climbed into the hold of the Emirates aircraft undetected. When Dubai police asked him about the nine and a half hour journey, Xu said he found the flight reasonably comfortable, except for the lack of food or drink. Police later told him that the stories on Chinese websites were false, and that begging was illegal in Dubai. The illegal immigrant now faces a hearing. The investigation may take a few months but as a minor he may not be sentenced. However, Chengdu Business Daily thinks Xu will be deported and consequently will be blacklisted from entering Dubai for the rest of his life.


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