Los Angeles police have arrested and detained a Chinese woman on a charge of physical assault after she allegedly slapped an airport duty-free shop clerk.
The incident happened in the Los Angeles Airport (LAX) last week, am730 reports.
The woman, surnamed Liang, is awaiting a court hearing. Police did not give a motive for the alleged attack.
Apple Daily, citing Chinese media reports, says Liang was preparing to board a China Eastern flight to Shanghai with her father when she got into a quarrel with the clerk, described by investigators as ethnic Chinese.
The clerk said Liang hit her twice in the face.
Liang was taken into custody and the flight, which was scheduled to leave at 1 a.m. Friday, was delayed for an hour.
An airport spokesman said the incident resulted from an altercation between the woman and the clerk, adding a judge will determine the circumstances based on a police investigation.
A US attorney said Liang could face severe punishment because all security-related incidents at US airports are considered serious.
However, she is liable to a fine of less than US$1,000 if the clerk did not sustain serious injury.
Liang might have difficulty entering the US again if the incident makes it to her immigration record, he said.
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