Monday, May 1, 1961: Hijacked to Cuba

The first hijacking of a U.S. flight occurs when Antulio Ramirez Ortiz, armed with a gun and a knife, takes control of a National Airlines flight en route from Miami to Key West, Florida, and redirects it to Cuba. Ortiz, an electrician in Miami, said he had been offered $100,000 to assassinate Cuban leader Fidel Castro and wanted to reach Cuba to warn Castro. Ortiz was allowed to stay, while the plane, crew and passengers would return to the United States.

* Summary from "The Encyclopedia of Kidnappings" (book by Michael Newton): @
* Account from "Terrorism on American Soil" (book by Joseph T. McCann): @
* Account from flight attendant: @
* History of the Federal Air Marshal Service (from propublica.org): @

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