- The Washington Times - Tuesday, January 6, 2004

HEBRON, Ky. (AP) — A woman was taken off a Paris-to-Cincinnati flight just before it left France yesterday because of suspicious wires poking out of her leather motorcycle jacket. Security officials later determined that she was not a threat.

It turned out that the jacket was designed to heat up like an electric blanket to keep the wearer warm, officials said.

However, as a precaution, Delta Flight 43 was kept a half-mile away from the terminal at Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport after it landed. U.S. officials said they planned to rescreen passengers and baggage.

The nation is under orange alert, the second-highest of five color-coded terrorism-threat levels. The government has started photographing and fingerprinting foreigners arriving at U.S. airports, and some international flights have been canceled or delayed because of terrorism fears.

The plane landed at a cargo area where Air Force One lands when President Bush visits. Police cars and Delta passenger buses were gathered at the site, which is surrounded by a 10-foot chain-link fence with barbed wire.

A Homeland Security official, speaking on the condition of anonymity, said the passenger was taken off the plane before it left France because of concerns about the wires. Police bomb-disposal experts were called in to check the woman’s jacket, said French police officials speaking on the condition of anonymity.

It later was learned that the wires were part of her leather motorcycle jacket, officials said.

The Boeing 767-300 is a regularly scheduled flight from Paris’ Charles de Gaulle Airport.

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