Police: Pilot Kidnapped Foreign Student and Tried to Send Him ‘Back to China’

A pilot and certified flight instructor in California allegedly kidnapped a foreign student, brought him to an airport, and tried to have him sent “back to China.” Police say Jonathan McConkey worked with his assistant, Kelsi Hoser, to orchestrate the abduction at the IASCO Flight Training school in Redding. The pair’s unwitting victim, Tianshu Shi, was reportedly one of dozens of Chinese nationals with student visas training at the school. McConkey and Hoser allegedly showed up at Shi’s place of residence late Thursday and notified him they were “deporting” him before turning up again the next morning to force Shi into a car. McConkey allegedly “battered” the student and told him he’d suffer further violence if he didn’t go along with the plan. The vigilante deportation was thwarted after Shi’s brother phoned Redding police from Shanghai, and officers intercepted the two alleged abductors as they tried to force Shi onto a plane at the municipal airport. The pair now faces conspiracy and kidnapping charges.