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Press Release

Passenger Aboard United Flight Arrested for Writing Note Regarding Bomb on Plane

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of Colorado

DENVER – Cameron E. Korth, age 20, was arrested by the FBI on January 17, 2017, for Maliciously Conveying False Information after a note was found on a United flight from San Diego, California to Denver, Colorado, Acting U.S. Attorney Bob Troyer and FBI Special Agent in Charge Calvin Shivers announced. Korth is scheduled to make his initial appearance this afternoon at 2:00 p.m. before U.S. Magistrate Judge Scott T. Varholak, where he will be advised of his rights and the charges pending against him.


According to the affidavit in support of the Criminal Complaint, on January 16, 2017, Korth claimed to have found a note in the bathroom aboard United Flight 231 from San Diego to Denver. The note stated that there was a bomb on the plane, and that the flight crew should not attempt to land the aircraft. Korth shared the note with the flight crew, who notified authorities at Denver International Airport, including the FBI. When the plane landed, it was parked on an isolated taxiway. Passengers were evacuated onto waiting buses and the aircraft was swept by Denver Police Department explosive detection canine assets. No explosives were found.


Korth was asked to write an accounting of what happened aboard the flight. There were similarities between his handwriting and the note in question. Eventually agents and officers determined that Korth wrote the note in his seat on paper he found jammed in the seat; he took the note to one of the bathrooms on the aircraft; he placed the note in the toilet seat cover dispenser; and he pointed the note out to one of the flight attendants. He was later arrested.


Korth is currently charged with Maliciously Conveying False Information, which carries a penalty of not more than 10 years in federal prison, and up to a $250,000 fine.


This matter was investigated by the Denver Police Department and the Denver Division of the FBI.


The defendant is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Kurt Bohn and Jason St. Julien.


A Criminal Complaint is a probable cause charging document. Anyone accused of committing a felony violation of federal law has a Constitutional right to be indicted by a federal grand jury. The charges contained in the Complaint are allegations, and the defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

Updated January 18, 2017