User:AZOperator/US: Flight instructor attempts deportation of Chinese student by kidnapping

From Wikinews, the free news source you can write!
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Law enforcement released details surrounding the alleged attempted kidnapping and deportation of a Chinese flight student, Tianshu 'Chris' Shi, 21, by Jonathan McConkey, 48, and Kelsi Hoser, 50, of the IASCO Flight School in the United States city of Redding, California. McConkey and Hoser are current being held at Shasta County Jail with bail set at US$100,000 each under charges of conspiracy and kidnapping, though other charges may also be filed.

Currently, Shi resides inside the United States legally as he pursues a pilot certification under an M-1 visa, a yearlong visa with 5 months remaining. For the last two months, he confirmed, his training has been suspended. Shi has said he suspects this is because his English proficiency, which is vital towards safely navigating the increasingly complicated airspace over the United States, came under scrutiny.

Paying approximately US$70,000 per student, the Civil Aviation Flight University of China sent a number of Chinese nationals to IASCO Flight Training. McConkey and Hoser are both instructors at the school.

According to Redding law enforcement, McConkey confronted Shi at his dormitory Thursday, telling him, "they were sending him back to China." Friday morning, McConkey and Hoser allegedly attacked Shi at his dormitory in Trudie Trail, California. Shi made one phone call to his brother in China, Baihan Fu, before he began complying with McConkey and Hoser's orders fearing his life was in danger. Fu, who was more proficient in English, alerted local law enforcement of the abduction. Shi, McConkey, and Hoser, were found by local law enforcement at Redding Municipal Airport with Shi showing minor injuries.

Shi recorded audio during the alleged abduction which consisted of a man, possibly McConkey saying, "You're going, with or without your luggage." A woman also spoke on the recording in Mandarin before switching to English, stating, "Speak English, please! Can you speak English? If you cannot speak English you are not going to able to stay here." At some point after the abduction, the male voice declared Shi was in their custody adding, "the United States government needs you out of this country right now, you understand?"

In a federal lawsuit, a former IASCO Flight School instructor claimed Chinese students lacked the minimum English language proficiency to operate an aircraft safely within the US. The instructor's claims came after a student nearly crashed a plane due to communication discrepancies. Neither McConkey nor Hoser were named in the lawsuit. The motive for the alleged attack on Shi is still unknown as investigators try to understand the dynamics governing the Chinese student influx into IASCO Flight School.


CAT:China CAT:United States CAT:California CAT:Aviation CAT:Crime and law CAT:Immigration