Man charged after flight forced to return to Perth airport

hand holding handcuffs

A 45-year-old Cairns man is scheduled to appear in Perth Magistrate’s Court this morning after being charged with allegedly making threats regarding aviation security during a flight from Perth to Cairns early this morning (Friday, 10 January 2020).  

A flight bound for Cairns from Perth advised it was turning around and landed safety back at Perth Airport at 2.45am this morning (AWST), where it was met by Australian Federal Police (AFP) officers.

It will be alleged in court the man made a number of offensive comments to other passengers, which included threatening to “blow up the plane”, swearing and talking about pornography with passengers under the age of 18 years.

Passengers advised the airline crew of this behaviour, which resulted in the decision to return the aircraft to Perth.

AFP officers boarded the plane and arrested the 45-year-old man. He was charged with one count of threats regarding aviation security contrary to regulation 9.01(1) of the Aviation Transport Security Regulations 2005, and transported to the Perth Watch House, where bail was refused. The maximum penalty for this offence is a fine of $10,500.

Perth Airport Police Commander Peter Brindal said the AFP works closely with the aviation industry to ensure the safety and security of the travelling public.

“The AFP takes all threats regarding aviation security seriously and will take action against travellers who engage in offensive behaviour.”

“Offensive behaviour such as this can result in a criminal conviction, a hefty fine, and the possibility that airline operators will undertake civil action to recover expenses associated with returning and removing passengers doing the wrong thing,” said Commander Brindal.

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