Tokyo-Bound Plane Returns to LAX After Crew Discovers Passenger Boarded Wrong Flight, Airline ANA Says

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A plane headed for Tokyo was forced to return to Los Angeles International Airport Tuesday after crew members discovered several hours into the flight that a passenger was on board the wrong plane, police said.

All Nippon Airways (ANA) Boeing 787 is seen on the taxiway at Haneda international airport in Tokyo on August 2, 2017.

All Nippon Airways (ANA) Boeing 787 is seen on the taxiway at Haneda international airport in Tokyo on August 2, 2017.
Japan's All Nippon Airways is expected to release its April-June earnings results on August 2. / AFP PHOTO / Toshifumi KITAMURA (Photo credit should read TOSHIFUMI KITAMURA/AFP/Getty Images)

All Nippon Airways NH175, which departed LAX shortly after 11:30 a.m., turned around about four hours into the flight after crew members became aware that one passenger had boarded the wrong flight, according to a statement from the airline.

The pilot was notified and decided to return to the airport where the flight originated, the statement read, noting the decision was in line with the airline's security procedure.

The plane returned to Los Angeles around 7:30 p.m., about eight hours after it took off. Typically, the duration of a flight from L.A. to Tokyo is 11 hours and 28 minutes.

LAX Police Department said it was alerted and units were requested to stand by at the gate.

While headed back to the airport, the airline figured out the incident was just a mix-up; nevertheless, the plane continued back to LAX, a police spokesperson told KTLA, adding it was "not a security issue.

Model Chrissy Teigen, who was on board the flight, tweeted about the experience, saying "150 people have been majorly inconvenienced."

"They keep saying the person had a United ticket. We are on ANA," Teigen said on Twitter. " So basically the boarding pass scanner is just a beedoop machine that makes beedoop noises that register to nowhere."

Teigen later tweeted that police were interviewing the passengers before they were let off the plane, which she said was in a "secure area."

The FBI later confirmed its agents were conducting the interviews, telling KTLA in an emailed statement that there had been a report of a possible stowaway.

No arrests have been made, and an investigation into the incident is ongoing, the FBI said.

ANA also said it was working to determine how the passenger was able to board the flight, according to the airline statement. The airline also apologized to all passengers aboard NH175 for the inconvenience.

The remaining passengers did finally take off for Tokyo, Tiegen tweeted at 1:47 a.m. Wednesday.

KTLA's Meghan McMonigle and Nidia Becerra contributed to this story.