BA plane
The passenger plane was rescheduled to leave after a delay of three-and-a-half hours Reuters Photographer/Reuters

A London-bound British Airways flight, BA8462, from Ibiza was evacuated and searched by bomb squad officers – minutes before take-off – after a woman was found travelling with incorrect documents. All the passengers were asked to disembark as crew found a female passenger travelling with a "fake passport".

The flight, which was scheduled to leave at 11am on 8 January from Eivissa Airport, was delayed for three-and-a-half hours after crew checked the documents of the woman – believed to be an Iranian. According to police, the woman was travelling to Dublin after a stopover in London.

After all the passengers got off the British Airways fight bomb squad officers were called in to search the plane. A Civil Guard spokesman confirmed passengers had been asked to leave the plane because of the "incident on board". The plane was searched thrice and all bags were rescreened before it was rescheduled to leave. However, it is unclear whether the woman was allowed to board the flight.

One of the passengers, Gabriel Gimenez, said that after the woman was escorted out of the plane, bomb squad officers began dismantling her seat. "We don't know what they were looking for. I don't know why they had to do this in front of everyone because doing that spread panic," Gimenez told Periodico de Ibiza.

"The aircraft returned to stand after authorities realised a customer was travelling with incorrect documents," a BA spokeswoman said. "The customer was offloaded and, in line with normal security procedures, all customers and their bags were re-screened as a precaution," the spokeswoman added.

On 4 January, a 44-year-old Romanian man tried to open the emergency exit of an Air Europa flight travelling between Majorca and Ibiza mid-air. However, he was overpowered by crew members and passengers. After the plane landed safely, the man was handed over to police. Civil Guard officers had said that the man was trying to commit suicide and was not a terrorist act.