British Airways Customer Threatens Crew

British Airways PlaneA male passenger from the US has reportedly gone into a drunken rage while travelling to the UK on a British Airways flight. He is alleged to have been arrested after threatening to use a shard of glass to stab the pilots. Frightened passengers said the 32-year-old, identified as Tom Bradley, had been drinking a lot of wine and beer prior to his ranting and attack.

Bradley was flying in business-class to Heathrow Airport from Phoenix, Arizona on British Airways flight 288. His explosion of rage started after the flight attendants refused to serve him more alcohol. According to witnesses, he was repeatedly stumbling around, swearing and shouting during the nearly 10-hour journey. When people tried to calm him, he would take to spitting on them. Then he is said to have assaulted a senior member of the flight crew, pushing him into the galley and demanding to be told why he could have anymore alcohol.

One of the passengers that was sitting near Bradley on the plane, Lesley Lewis, 31, said that she could see him holding a broken glass at one point, ready to assault the crew while talking to himself. He told people around him that he would stab the pilots if they want. Lewis added that she was petrified, along with other passengers.

British Airways said they ensured police were waiting at the gate for Bradley when the plane landed at Heathrow Terminal Five on Saturday. A spokesman said that the man’s behaviour, despite efforts by cabin crew to pacify him, continued to be unacceptable and police met the flight. They don’t stand for abusive actions toward their customers and staff, he added.

Following the drunken assault, Bradley was charged with common assault and being intoxicated on an aircraft. On Monday, he appeared at Uxbridge Magistrates’ Court and was remanded in custody. He is due to reappear at Isleworth Crown Court on September 23, when he will be sentenced.

This is only the most recent incident to occur with an air passenger during a flight. Just a week ago, 45-year-old Carol Close escaped going to jail for an attack on November 5 last year. She forced a Thomson Airways service to the Dominican Republic to make an emergency landing in Bermuda after she bit, punched and kicked two stewards.

The berserk fit started when the charity worker started hitting her husband, who was then moved. This made the issue worse, with the woman shouting through the plane. The attack on flight crew happened when they tried to restrain her, and nearby passengers had to be eventually moved as well. The court only order her to pay police costs and compensation to the cabin crew after it emerged the flight had a 30-hour delay and that Close suffered from a nervous disposition and was of ill health.



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