A 13-year-old boy in eastern China has reportedly been fined for stealing two planes and taking them on a joyride at a local airport.
But there’s a small silver lining: Airport staff were so impressed by his skill that he’ll soon be taking lessons instructed by a pilot, according to the South China Morning Post.
On June 15, the unidentified boy trespassed a small airport in Huzhou, a city in eastern China, taxiing and soon crashing a SeaRey seaplane worth $273,000 onto a guard rail, the Post reported. He then navigated another plane, driving it in circles before abandoning it. He was unharmed.
Local police found him doing his homework, said the Global Times, and slapped him with a fine just under $300.
The original fine was more than $1,150, the cost of the damage to the seaplane, but his family was able to haggle the fee down to less than $300 because they were unable to afford the full cost.
The airport’s director, identified as Mr. He, promised to offer the boy full pilot training.
Staff were reportedly impressed by the boy’s ability to taxi the plane without any formal piloting experience.
His only knowledge, they told the Global Times, was watching the pilots repair the plane a day before his joyride.
The airport’s staff plans on increasing airport security after the incident.
“We pilots all admired him,” Mr. He said, according to the South China Morning Post.
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