BBC Home
Explore the BBC
BBC News
Launch consoleBBC NEWS CHANNEL
Last Updated: Thursday, 5 July 2007, 15:18 GMT 16:18 UK
Plane diverted as staff assaulted
Airplane cabin
Mr Charvator had been travelling to Russia via London
A flight from Toronto to London had to be diverted to Belfast after a drunken passenger assaulted two stewardesses and exposed himself, a court has heard.

Israeli businessman Simon Charvatov had to be restrained by a police officer before the aircraft landed at Belfast International Airport on 26 June.

Details of the drama were revealed at a bail application by Mr Charvator, 46, at Belfast High Court on July 5.

Refusing bail, the judge said the incident could have been "disastrous".

The court heard that the diversion cost the airline about 30,000.


Mr Charvatov was travelling to Russia via London when the incident occurred.

A Crown lawyer said Mr Charvatov had been drinking from a litre bottle of whiskey which he purchased on board as duty free.

"When the stewardess spoke to him, he grabbed her by the wrist and twisted it," the lawyer said.

"Another stewardess managed to break his hold but in doing so she was grabbed on the right breast and buttock.

The aircraft landed at Belfast International Airport
The aircraft landed at Belfast International Airport
"She was pushed away and Charvatov exposed himself."

The lawyer said Mr Charvatov "kept banging his head on the seat in front and on the aircraft window".

She said a Canadian police officer had to restrain him and took the half-empty whiskey bottle from him.

The charges against him include endangering the plane's safety, failing to obey the captain's orders, assaulting the two stewardesses, using threatening language and indecent exposure.

Refusing bail, the judge said: "To behave like that on an aircraft could have disastrous consequences and in the circumstances I don't consider that release on bail could be justified."

Has China's housing bubble burst?
How the world's oldest clove tree defied an empire
Why Royal Ballet principal Sergei Polunin quit


Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific