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The Latest: Inflight behavior blamed on hallucination - KSBY.com | San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara Area News

The Latest: Inflight behavior blamed on hallucination

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HONOLULU (AP) - The Latest on a Turkish man accused of causing a flight disturbance pleading guilty (all times local):

2:10 p.m.

A Turkish man whose inflight behavior prompted fighter jets to escort the plane to its Honolulu says he was hallucinating and trying to catch a butterfly at the time.

Anil Uskanli pleaded guilty Tuesday to interfering with a flight crew. He says he was ill and now realizes there was no butterfly on the plane.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Thomas Brady says Uskanli was acting oddly on the American Airlines flight from Los Angeles, including walking to the front of the plane with a blanket wrapped around his head. Brady says crew members feared his laptop contained explosives, prompting bomb-threat procedures.

Tuesday's hearing was delayed by several hours because of problems with the Turkish interpreter. The hearing eventually proceeded without the use of an interpreter because Uskanli reads and speaks English.

1:20 p.m.

A Turkish man accused of causing a flight disturbance is expected to plead guilty.

Anil Uskanli wants to plead guilty to interfering with a flight crew, but while Tuesday's plea hearing was underway, the federal judge in Honolulu abruptly walked off the bench out of apparent frustration with the Turkish interpreter. U.S. District Judge Derrick Watson seemed annoyed that the interpreter wasn't effectively translating.

The hearing was already delayed by several hours because the interpreter was late. Uskanli's attorney says his client speaks and understands some English.

Court documents say Uskanli tried to get to the front of the plane during an American Airlines flight from Los Angeles and crew members feared his laptop contained explosives.

9:20 a.m.

A Turkish man accused of causing a flight disturbance that prompted fighter jets to escort the airplane to its Honolulu destination is scheduled to enter a plea in the case.

Anil Uskanli's attorney Richard Sing says he's expected to plead guilty Tuesday to interfering with a flight crew. Sing says he's worked out a plea deal with prosecutors.

Court documents say Uskanli tried to get to the front of the plane during an American Airlines flight from Los Angeles in May. Crew members feared his laptop contained explosives.

He underwent a mental competency evaluation after his lawyer requested one. A judge later ruled he's competent to stand trial.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Morgan Early says Uskanli suffers from a "major mental illness."

A Turkish interpreter will be available at the hearing.

Copyright 2017 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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