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Montclair State University Student Threatens To Bring Down A TAM Airline Jumbo Jet

January 13, 2013 - A criminal complaint has been filed against a Montclair State University student in connection to an email that alleges the attempted downing of a TAM Airline flight out of Miami to Brasilia if fight takes off. 

Francisco Fernando Cruz, 22, a citizen of Brazil and a student at Montclair State University was charged with sending threatening emails claiming that a TAM Airline flight from Miami to Brasilia “will go down.” 

According to the criminal complaint, on January 8, 2014, an email was sent to Miami Dade Police Department as well as TAM Airlines. The content of the email made a specific threat against a TAM Airlines Flight that was to depart on January 10, 2014, from Miami to Brasilia.


The threat stated the following “Flight must not take off. Targeted. It will go down. Retaliation. Cargo is dangerous. Be advised.” The Miami Dade Police Department was able to trace the origin of the email and determined the email originated from a computer at Montclair State University in Montclair, New Jersey. 

The university was able to capture video of the person that utilized the kiosk that sent the email. The following day, the email was resent, again with the threat. Law enforcement were able to identity Cruz as the sender of the two emails. Cruz traveled from New York to Miami and was scheduled to travel to Brasilia on the flight against which he made the threat. 

If convicted, the defendant faces a statutory maximum of five years in prison and a $250,000 fine. The case is set for pretrial detention hearing on January 14, 2014 and for arraignment on January 24, 2014. Both hearings are scheduled for 10:00 a.m. before the duty magistrate.


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