A FedEx pilot was arrested in Guangzhou and released on bail, the company said Thursday, amid an ongoing row with Beijing over the US firm’s delivery irregularities involving telecoms giant Huawei.

Todd Hohn, a former US Air Force pilot, was arrested by Chinese authorities a week ago as he waited for a commercial flight in the company’s Asia hub at Guangzhou, after making a round of deliveries.

After the arrest, authorities searched his luggage where they found air gun pellets, a source close to the matter said.

“Chinese authorities in Guangzhou detained and later released one of our pilots on bail after an item was found in his luggage prior to a commercial flight,” a FedEx spokeswoman said, confirming information first published in the Wall Street Journal.

Chinese authorities have opened a criminal investigation, according to the paper.

FedEx is facing multiple investigations in China, where it has come under fire for delivery irregularities related to Huawei. In May, FedEx apologized for “misrouting” what it said was a “small number” of Huawei packages.

Huawei said at the time it would review its ties with the courier service over the incident.

A Beijing probe launched in June accused FedEx of holding up more than 100 packages from Huawei. (AFP)