Airline mechanic accused of sabotaging passenger flight

Federal charges say the American Airlines employee used a styrofoam material and super glue to block a port leading to part of the flight's data system.
1:33 | 09/06/19

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Transcript for Airline mechanic accused of sabotaging passenger flight
We turn to that airline arrest. A mechanic taken into custody accused of sabotaging a passenger plane instead of fixing it and David Kerley there with the story. Good morning, David. Reporter: Good morning. This is an extremely serious charge. It is willfully destroying, damaging or disabling an aircraft. This happened to an American airlines jet appearing to take off when the pilots noticed something wrong. It happened in Miami, an American hub and the federal charges say that the mechanic used a sty foam material and some super glue to block a port leading to part of the jet's flight data system. Now, a tube is supposed to be attached to that port and that's providing critical data on air speed and which way the nose is pointed. At the runway the pilots revved the engine and got a warning light and returned with all 150 on board. Now, American found the alteration. This happened back in mid-july and actually got to surveillance video and were able to identify the mechanic. His name is abdul-majeed marouf Ahmed Alani and he admitted that he did try to disable this Such a disturbing allegation. You're hearing money might have been the motive. Reporter: Yeah, that's what he says in the interview and federal court documents. American has been locked in a union battle with its mechanics union for some time. The mechanic said he's been frustrated by that and costing him money and hoping to get overtime by sabotaging this aircraft, Cecilia. David, thank you.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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