Sergei Vladimirovich Ochegava may be sentenced to up to five years in prison, and will have to serve his sentence in a US federal prison – mentioned Citing the California Attorney General's Office, CNN.
The 46-year-old arrived last November on a Scandinavian Airlines flight from Copenhagen to Los Angeles. After landing, of course, they asked for his documents, but he only hesitated. According to the official record, he provided “misleading information.” He claimed that he forgot his documents on the plane.
However, the US Border Patrol did not find his documents or even his name on the SAS passenger list. Uchigawa's name was not on any other incoming international flights. Then it turned out that, in addition to his ticket, he did not have a passport and, by definition, a visa.
While Washington reduced the validity of the entry permit, ESTA, from two years to just one year for Hungarian travelers, only once did Osegawa enter the United States without papers. By searching his bag, they found a Russian and Israeli ID card, and his personal data on his mobile phone – without a photo.
After running it, they found no data about the stowaway in the US system.
We believe he is a Russian citizen. We were unable to confirm his status in Israel
– Inform him Public Prosecutor's Office.
Passengers were counted
Uchigawa, who was charged with illegal entry on December 5, pleaded not guilty in court. He told the FBI he didn't even know how he got on the plane.
Last year, on November 3, Osegawa escorted an unsuspecting passenger through security gates at Copenhagen Airport and thus entered an airport lounge without a boarding pass, according to evidence presented during the three-day jury trial.
The next day, Oxigawa slipped through the boarding gate “unnoticed” and boarded a Scandinavian Airlines flight to Los Angeles, according to the prosecutor's statement.
Anyone who has traveled recently knows well that it is not easy to get past security at an airport.
Most flight attendants did not notice the man's presence on the plane except “because he was constantly walking around and changing seats.” In addition, he “ordered a double portion” at every meal, and on one occasion attempted to “steal an employee's chocolate.”
No one asked or saw his boarding pass, but they remembered that he took a seat that should have been empty.
Although staff performed a tiered check of passengers to ensure there was a balance of passengers at take-off and landing, the numbers were not added up – so it was not detected that there was a single person on board more than the number of passengers. People who changed tickets.
You don't understand either
During Ochigava's first interrogation, with the help of a Russian translator, he told the FBI agent that he had a doctorate in economics and marketing, adding that he had worked as an economist in Russia “for a long time.”
He explained in confusion that he had not slept for three days, and he did not even understand what was happening.
He wasn't even sure if he had a valid plane ticket, and he didn't know how he got on the plane, or even in Copenhagen at all.
Sergei Ochegava remains in detention since his arrest. After the jury found him guilty, he is expected to be sentenced in federal court on February 5.
(Cover photo: Planes lining up for takeoff at Los Angeles International Airport on June 20, 2001. Photo by David McNew/Getty Images)