March 4, 2011
It’s called “shining” and it puts people in aircrafts—and those on the ground—in danger.
Mollie Halpern: It’s called “shining” and it puts people in aircrafts—and those on the ground—in danger. I’m Mollie Halpern of the Bureau, and this is “FBI, This Week”. Shining is when a laser is aimed at an aircraft. John Fagan of the Bureau’s civil aviation security program and Baltimore’s liaison agent says this federal crime is on the rise.
Special Agent John Fagan: They’ve shined private jets, Learjets, single engine private plans—anything that’s in the air seems to be an attraction to it.
Halpern: Lasers can reach into a cockpit, damage pilots’ eyes, and cause them to lose control of the aircraft.
Fagan: There’s a distinct inherent danger, that plane going down in a major metropolitan area, that it’s going to land in somebody’s neighborhood and it’s not going to land the way it’s supposed to land. There’s going to be a catastrophic loss of life.
Halpern: The penalty? “Shiners” could land in federal prison for a maximum 20 years.
Fagan: If you see somebody out and they’re shining up in the air, just call 9-1-1 and have the local police respond.
Halpern: And that’s what’s happening at the “FBI, This Week.”
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