Maine man says he accidentally lit match on jet

Posted March 18, 2010, at 3:27 p.m.

BOSTON — A man from Maine who struck a match on a U.S. Airways flight to Boston’s Logan International Airport is facing some heat — but not over the matches.

Massachusetts State Police detained 50-year-old Paul Prater of Sanford on Wednesday after questioning him on an outstanding identity fraud warrant from Canton, Ga.

State police spokesman David Procopio said no charges have been brought for the match lighting, which Prater said was an accident.

Prater told investigators the match ignited when he pulled a package from his pocket during the flight from Washington, D.C. He quickly snuffed the flame.

Suffolk County District Attorney spokesman Jake Wark said Prater was to appear Thursday in East Boston District Court on a fugitive charge. It was unclear if Prater has an attorney.

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