YOU READ IT HERE FIRST: Federal authorities arrested and charged an Indian national living in Louisiana with groping a woman while gratifying himself on a flight from Houston to Newark.
Devender Singh, 61, of Baton Rouge, was arrested at Newark Liberty International Airport yesterday after his flight arrived and was taken into federal custody by the FBI, U.S. Attorney Paul J. Fishman said this afternoon.
A judge ordered him detained today with the option of requesting bail following a brief hearing in Newark.
Fishman said Singh was “seated next to a woman who occupied a window seat on a United Airlines flight from Houston to Newark. While the plane was in the air, the woman fell asleep. She awoke to find Singh kissing her face with his hand inside her shirt. Singh was also touching his exposed penis.
“After pushing Singh off of her and telling him to get away, the woman went to the back of the plane and told a flight crew member what had happened, asking that the police be present when the plane landed,” Fishman said.
FOR A COPY OF THE FEDERAL COMPLAINT, CLICK THE IMAGE:
The federal government has exclusive jurisdiction over all sexual abuse cases that occur on aircraft in flight in the U.S.
Fishman said the maximum fine for a conviction in such a case is two years in federal prison and a $250,000 fine.
He credited the FBI and the Port Authority Police Department.
Handling the case for the government is J. Jamari Buxton of Fishman’s General Crimes Unit in Newark.
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