The man who caused the lockdown of busy Newark International Airport right after New Year has been arrested and faces charges of disorderly conduct, media reports said.
Haisong Jiang, a 28-year-old Rutgers University graduate student from China, slipped past security guards at the New Jersey airport Jan 3, the New York Times reported Saturday.
Jiang apparently slipped past a security guard to embrace a woman and kiss her before she boarded her plane Jan 3. He was able to duck under the rope because a guard had stepped away to answer someone's question.
After security officials were alerted that there had been a breach, they locked down the terminal, stranding some 1,600 people for six hours.
The lockdown raised the level of tension over air travel, coming little more than a week after the 23-year-old terrorist suspect Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab tried to explode an airplane carrying 290 people as it was about to land in Detroit on Christmas Day.
To the embarrassment of security officials, their equipment had failed to capture the standard views normally made of the Newark screening area, and they had to borrow private tapes made by an airline to examine what had happened.
The Times reported that Jiang ducked under the rope to hug his girlfriend, who lives in Los Angeles.
The intensive manhunt for Jiang ended Friday night in Piscataway, New Jersey, where he lives. He faces a maximum sentence of 30 days in jail for defiant trespass.
The duty guard has been on administrative leave since Tuesday, and faces disciplinary action, the Times reported.
The Times quoted a friend of Jiang as saying he was "very much" in love with the unnamed woman and he "just wanted to say goodbye... it was a very emotional moment".
"I think this man is very romantic," another friend, Andy Riu, told the Times.