Drunk off-duty pilot threatens to have flight from Spain ‘shot down by missile’

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MISSILE THREAT: The off-duty pilot was restrained until the flight from Spain was met by police on landing (File photograph). Photo credit: Shutterstock

AN air hostess has claimed she feared for her life after an off-duty pilot allegedly got drunk and threatened to have the aircraft downed by a missile on a flight from Spain.

The pilot has appeared in court where he is facing charges of being drunk, threatening to blow up an aircraft, assaulting a stewardess, damaging parts of the plane, gesturing indecently in front of passengers and behaving disruptively.

The alleged incidents happened on a flight from Madrid bound for Dubai.

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A member of the cabin crew said that the man had been escorted to the flight by four staff from the UAE Embassy in Spain and was told that he could not stay anymore in Madrid because of residency issues.

The court was told: “When he first walked into the plane, he addressed me jokingly by saying ‘I haven’t smoked in 15 minutes’. I replied that smoking is not permitted on the plane.

“His response was that he is a pilot himself and knows the rules and regulations.

“He acted rowdily and ran towards the aircraft’s kitchen, took two beers without permission.

She went on: “He disturbed the passengers, shouting at them and cursing.

“He also threatened to kill me and claimed that he would blow up the plane because he was carrying explosives.”

Another stewardess said: “When we were cruising above Iraq, he said that he had called his friend in Baghdad and asked him to shoot down the plane with a missile.

“He shouted that we were all going to die.

“After having been restrained and made to take his seat, he told me that a VIP will be waiting for us at the airport and will have us all fired. I felt scared for myself and my family and was also afraid of losing my job.”

Witnesses told the court the Emirati man was restrained for remaining 5 hours and 40 minutes of the flight until he was handed over to Dubai police when the aircraft landed.

The judge has adjourned the hearing until October 24.

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