Justice Department tells prosecutors to prioritize cases against crimes on flights

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  • Attorney General Merrick Garland instructed US lawyers to prioritize the prosecution of federal crimes on commercial aircraft as the holiday travel season begins.
  • The Federal Aviation Administration said Tuesday that it has received about 5,338 reports of unruly passenger behavior since the beginning of the year.
  • Garland said she is concerned about an increase in criminal behavior that threatens the safety of flight attendants, flight crew and passengers.

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Attorney General Merrick Garland on Wednesday directed US lawyers to prioritize the prosecution of federal crimes on commercial aircraft as the holiday travel season begins.

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one in memorandum, Garland urged federal prosecutors to communicate directly with law enforcement about incidents on commercial flights that violate federal laws and encourage reporting crimes in a “complete and timely” manner.

Garland’s directive comes amid a spurt in reports of criminal behavior on flights. The Federal Aviation Administration said on Tuesday that it had received About 5,338 reports Uncontrolled passenger behavior since the beginning of the year.

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Of those reports, 3,856 were related to masks. The Transportation Security Administration in September doubled fines for passengers refusing to comply with the federal mask mandate for air travel. However, flight attendants who enforced the onboard mandate on commercial flights were still concerned about physical attacks from passengers.

Garland said on Wednesday, the travel-heavy day before Thanksgiving, that she is concerned about a rise in criminal behavior that threatens the safety of flight attendants, flight crew and passengers.

The attorney general said in a statement, “Passengers who commit violence against flight crew and flight attendants, intimidate or threaten violence, harm those employees, prevent the performance of critical duties that may lead to safe air travel.” Let’s help ensure the journey.” “Similarly, when passengers commit violent acts against other passengers in the proximity of a commercial aircraft, the conduct puts everyone at risk.”

In Wednesday’s memo, Garland also discussed establishing an information-sharing protocol between the Federal Aviation Administration and the Justice Department. As a result, dozens of incidents have already been referred to the FBI for investigation, he said.

Garland said in the memo, “The Department of Justice is committed to using its resources to prevent violence, intimidation, threats of violence and other criminal behavior that endanger the safety of passengers, flight crew and flight attendants on commercial aircraft.” Huh.” ,

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