A Canadian man was held on drug charges Saturday after officials seized a DC-3 cargo plane that apparently ran low on fuel before landing with more than 1,300 kilograms of cocaine, authorities said.
Police searched the residential neighborhood surrounding the Allentown-Bethlehem-Easton International Airport for two other men who fled the plane after it landed shortly before midnight Friday.Harold Hill, 46, was arraigned Saturday morning and was being held in Lehigh County prison on $10 million bail, according to Lehigh County District Attorney William Platt.
Officials said Hill was arrested by state police after the plane, believed to be traveling from Colombia to Canada, landed to refuel.
Airport Director Jack Yohe said Federal Aviation Administration officials notified airport security that the plane was heading toward the airport to land without proper clearance.
Platt said the plane apparently was running low on fuel and turned off its lights as it approached the airport. The pilot turned on the lights just before landing near the airport fuel tanks.
Police said the three men on board the plane were met by airport security guard Richard Hageman and airport firefighter Dan Bear. The men fled on foot, and were chased by the two airport employees, who were joined by state police based near the airport.
Hill, whose hometown was unknown, was caught near the airport and was charged with possession of cocaine with intent to deliver and conspiracy. The other two, identified as pilot William McGoldrich of Florida and a man known only as "Rick," escaped.