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Vietnam Airlines pilot still detained in Japan after shoplifting scandal

Wednesday, October 14, 2015, 16:27 GMT+7

The Vietnam Airlines pilot that was captured in Japan last week after attempting to carry unpaid items out of a local shop remains in detention there, a source with knowledge of the arrest said Tuesday.

The man, whose name has yet to be disclosed, is a first officer belonging to the Airbus A330 flying crew of the flagship national carrier.

The 56-year-old was detained by Osaka police on October 6, after being caught leaving a store near the hotel his flying crew was staying with unpaid items.

The man had arrived in the Japanese city from Ho Chi Minh City the same day.

The Civil Aviation Authority of Vietnam (CAAV) said on Tuesday it has not been briefed about the fate of the co-pilot by Vietnam Airlines.

The issue has nothing to do with Vietnam Airlines’ aviation operations, the CAAV noted on its website.

Vietnam Airlines is working with Japanese authorities to solve the problem, the CAAV said, citing a report by the carrier.

There is no official information regarding the issue from the Japanese side.

A Vietnam Airlines report last week said the pilot had realized he did not carry his passport with him to the store, and asked to return to get it from the hotel.

He suggested that the store temporarily keep the goods he had picked up along with his bag for him, but as soon as he passed the door, the alarm of the detecting equipment went off.

The shopkeepers immediately checked the Vietnamese customer, only to discover that he was carrying unpaid merchandise in his pocket.

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