US 'singling out' French bomb hoaxer

28th January 2004, Comments 0 comments

NEW YORK, Jan 27 (AFP) - A French national charged and held in New York for two weeks after he made bomb hoax claims during a flight remains jailed even after paying a fine, his lawyer said Tuesday.

NEW YORK, Jan 27 (AFP) - A French national charged and held in New York for two weeks after he made bomb hoax claims during a flight remains jailed even after paying a fine, his lawyer said Tuesday.

Franck Moulet, 27, admitted to a New York district court judge that he had made a false statement in making the bomb claim. All other charges, which could have put him in prison for seven years, were dropped following his confession.

He was fined USD 690 (EUR 550) - paid on Monday - and his lawyer Olivier Morice said he thought he would be returning to France.

Instead Morice will be meeting his client, still being held at New York's Rykers Island prison, early Wednesday.

"This is scandalous and unacceptable," Morice said. "He's in jail. He has not been transferred to an immigration center" as the deal was sealed 48 hours earlier.

Morice believes that Moulet is being singled out "because he is French."

Moulet, a student from Bouches-du-Rhone in southern France, was questioned by a steward on an American Airlines flight from Santo Domingo on January 10 on concerns that he had been locked in the toilet too long.

He emerged from the toilet and is alleged to have said that a bomb he placed there had not gone off.

Moulet was arrested when the plane landed at New York's John F. Kennedy airport.

© AFP

                                Subject: France news

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