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US Citizen Sentenced For 2 Years In Prison For Pointing Laser At Delta Airlines Plane

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US Citizen Sentenced For 2 Years In Prison For Pointing Laser At Delta Airlines Plane

Nicholas James Link, a United States citizen based in Minnesota, is sentenced to 2 years of prison time for his maneuvers of aiming a laser at a Delta Airlines flight, as per Wion’s report. The aforementioned incident occurred on the night of 29 October 2021. The dangerous act by the 43-year-old man disrupted the pilot’s efforts to land while raising alarms regarding the safety of passengers on the aircraft. As per the reports, the man pleaded guilty this year after being presented in court for endangering the flight.

At the time of the incident, Delta Airlines’ Airbus A319 was carrying out a commercial flight from Raleigh-Durham to Minneapolis. The plane was 9,000 feet west of River Falls, Wisconsin, when the laser pointed at it was at an altitude of 9,000 feet. The incident was reported by the pilot of the airline to the Minneapolis–Saint Paul International Airport (MSP).

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Up until a blue laser lit up the cockpit three times, everything was as usual. Air traffic control gave the plane a directive to switch runways when it was on its way to MSP airport. However, due to Link’s laser strikes, which caused a significant distraction for the pilots in the cockpit, they were unable to read this brief on their iPads.

On January 12, 2023, when US District Judge William M. Conley announced his decision to sentence Link to two years in prison, Link entered a plea of ​​guilty to this offense. The pilots were able to brief, transition to the new runway, and safely land the aircraft after the laser strikes without any untoward incidents occurring.

Although the captain’s right eye’s vision was apparently impaired for several hours following this incident, the first officer did not experience any vision disruption. Air traffic control called Minnesota State Patrol aircraft after the laser strikes. The patrol plane then made its way to River Falls to look into the situation and monitored the location of Link.

In his defence, the accused Link claimed that the risk of the laser attacks was not well recognized. Judge Conley, nevertheless, disagreed with him. The hazard is well known because these occurrences are routinely covered by the news, according to Judge Conley. He characterized firing a laser at an airplane as “incredibly dangerous and reckless.”

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