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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Western District of Washington

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, October 29, 2021

Passenger who disrupted flight from Hawaii to Seattle charged with federal crimes

Charges follow record setting $52,500 fine from FAA for assault and interference with the aircraft and crew

Seattle – A federal grand jury in Seattle returned an indictment this week charging Ryan Cajimat, 21, of Kapolei, Hawaii with two federal crimes for his disruptive and violent conduct on December 24, 2020, on a flight from Honolulu to Seattle.  Cajimat is scheduled to appear for arraignment on November 18, 2021. 

According to records filed in the case and public reports, Cajimat was on a Delta Airlines flight from Honolulu to Seattle when he became disruptive. About two hours before landing in Seattle, Cajimat attempted to open the cockpit door and struggled with flight attendants attempting to restrain him.  One flight attendant was punched in the face twice.  Cajimat was restrained for the rest of the flight and was removed from the plane on arrival in Seattle.

The Federal Aviation Administration issued a $52,500 fine. Delta Airlines banned him from further travel on that airline.

Cajimat is charged with interference with flight crew members and attendants and assault within a special aircraft jurisdiction of the United States.  Interference is punishable by up to 20 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.  Assault on an aircraft is punishable by up to one year in prison and a $100,000 fine.

The charges contained in the indictment are only allegations.  A person is presumed innocent unless and until he or she is proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.

The case was investigated by the FBI.  The case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Natalie Walton-Anderson.

Topic(s): 
Violent Crime
Contact: 
Press contact for the U.S. Attorney’s Office is Communications Director Emily Langlie at (206) 553-4110 or Emily.Langlie@usdoj.gov.
Updated October 29, 2021