By Katie Zezima
NEWARK, N.J. — A flight from Hong Kong on which a man claimed everyone was poisoned landed safely Monday at Newark Liberty Airport, and the man was taken off the plane under a heavy police presence.
The man stood up during the flight to make the claim but there was no indication that any passengers aboard United Airlines Flight 116 were actually poisoned, an FBI spokesman said.
After the passenger caused a disruption, procedures were followed and the flight continued on as scheduled with 238 passengers aboard to Newark, just outside New York City, the airline said.
A large police contingent greeted the flight's arrival, a passenger from another plane said.
Merrill Amos, a graduate student on her way back to San Francisco after attending a wedding in upstate New York, said dozens of police vehicles surround the plane after it stopped on the tarmac a few hundred yards short of the terminal. Amos said she saw a few passengers walk down a portable staircase and get into a waiting ambulance.
Amos said she saw authorities "dragging" a man she assumed was the passenger in question down the stairs and into a white SUV.
"He wasn't passed-out limp, but he looked very sluggish," Amos said.
The plane then taxied to the gate to allow the rest of the passengers to get off, she said.
Associated Press writers David Porter in Newark and Stephanie Siek in New York contributed to this report.
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Copyright 2013 Associated Press