Langley Regional Airport terminal building. (Langley Advance Times files)

Police refuse to comment on fate of arrested border jumper

It has been more than a year since the ERT arrested a man at Langley Regional Airport

A year after a dramatic border jumping incident ended with an arrest at the Langley airport by armed ERT officers, no police agency on either side of the border will say what happened to the suspect.

On Nov. 20, 2019, a man was taken into police custody after leading American and Canadian authorities on a cross-border chase in a light airplane.

The plane veered into the U.S. from B.C. and stopped at the tiny Methow Valley Airport in Winthrop, Wash.

According to Homeland Security officials, agents from the U.S. Customs and Border Protection’s Air and Marine Operations unit approached the pilot, he jumped into his airplane and took off.

Customs officers in helicopters chased the small plane all the way back across Washington State to the Canadian border, watching as he appeared to throw several bags out of the aircraft into the wilderness during the trip.

The plane darted across the border in the Lower Mainland, where RCMP Air Services picked up the pursuit.

READ MORE: Border jumper tossed bags out of plane before arrest at airport

The pilot landed at Langley airport, and was met on the runway by members of the Emergency Response Team and arrested.

Since then, no police agency involved in the case has been willing to provide any information on what happened to the pilot.

After several months of requests for information from RCMP E Division, which oversees RCMP operations in British Columbia, the Langley Advance Times was told to contact Homeland Security in the United States.

“In this case the RCMP is the assisting agency and it is therefore not our role to communicate updates, or provide information on an investigation other than our own,” said Sgt. Janelle Shoihet in an email.

Emails to U.S. Customs and Border Protection eventually also resulted in a directive to contact Homeland Security.

Multiple attempts to contact Homeland Security have gone unanswered, and there has been no follow-up press releases or statements from Homeland Security or Customs and Border Protection.

It is unknown if the suspect was ever criminally charged, is in custody or free, or even which country he is in.

The Langley Advance Times has reached out again to Homeland Security, but has not received an update.

RELATED: Bear cub tries to cross U.S.-Canada border, taken to wildlife shelter instead



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