Jamaican Gunman Arrested After Holding Plane Crew Hostage

Kingston, Jamaica (RPRN) 04/20/09-Jamaican officials say they have arrested the lone gunman who was holding five crew members of a CanJet airliner hostage at Montego Bay’s airport. Jamaican Information Minister Daryl Vaz told CNN the standoff is over, and everyone is safe. He says the gunman is about 20 years old and had demanded to go to Cuba.

Earlier Monday, Jamaica’s Prime Minister Bruce Golding and National Security Minister Dwight Nelson traveled to Sangster International Airport in Montego Bay to oversee the operation to end the standoff. Officials have described the gunman as as “mentally challenged.”

A CanJet official said 174 passengers were on board the plane when the gunman forced his way through security and boarded the aircraft, but they were eventually released unharmed.

The Canadian charter was originally scheduled to fly to Cuba before proceeding to its final destination of Halifax (Canada).

Officials say the gunman’s father was also on the scene, assisting in the negotiations to release the crew.