A U.S. man accused of hijacking an airplane full of passengers to Cuba in 1984 arrived Wednesday in Miami to turn himself in to authorities, federal prosecutors said.

FBI agents awaited William Potts Jr. at the Miami international airport to arrest him and turn him over to the U.S. judicial system.

Potts was accused of air piracy after he diverted a Piedmont Airlines flight to Havana as the aircraft was approaching Miami, its scheduled destination.

According to the accusation, Potts threatened to blow up the plane and shoot passengers if the pilot landed in Miami.

After Potts made the threats, the plane's pilot decided to fly to Havana, where Cuban authorities entered the aircraft and escorted Potts off.

Potts, who will probably appear before Judge Alicia Otazo-Reyes on Thursday, has remained in Cuba until he returned on Wednesday to Miami.

The 56-year-old was convicted of air piracy in Cuba and spent 13 years in prison. After his release, he married and started a family.

If found guilty in a U.S. court, Potts could face anywhere from 20 years to life behind bars. EFE