Patrick Cau, who is also known as Patrick Kaiser, 40, of Dallas, Texas, a German national who used to work for United Airlines was sentenced Monday to 18 months in federal prison for making at least 8 false bomb threats from October 2012 through January 2013 against flights operated by the international air carrier. He pleaded guilty in August to one count of false information and hoaxes. While Cau pleaded guilty to one felony count, in a plea agreement filed in federal court, he admitted making a total of eight bomb threats against United.
According to a FBI Press Release:
- In the first phone call, on October 4, 2012, Cau used a pay phone near his home to call an internal United crew scheduling number and state that a United flight from London to Los Angeles would be bombed later that day.
- He made the subsequent calls to 911 from pay phones in Los Angeles, New York City, Las Vegas, and Seattle, with all the calls stating that a specific United flight would be bombed.
As a result of the hoaxes, multiple law enforcement agencies were forced to respond to the bomb threats made by Cau. These law enforcement responses included evacuating people from the targeted airplanes; towing the aircraft to a safe area; searching and re-screening passengers, baggage, and cargo; and searching the aircraft by human, canine, and other detection methods.
As a direct result of Cau’s threats, United experienced substantial disruption to its business operations and services, including cancellation of and delays to flights, transfer of aircraft, and significant inconveniences to United passengers. Judge Wright today ordered Cau to pay $304,495 in restitution to United and $8,838 to reimburse the Los Angeles Police Department for expenses incurred as a result its response to the bomb threats.
The case against Cau was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation; U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI); and the Los Angeles Airport Police.