Man to face Perth court over alleged indecent act on a flight

A 54-year-old man accused of committing an indecent act on a domestic flight, including allegedly exposing himself to a female co-worker, is expected to face Perth Magistrate’s Court today [29 December 2020].

The man, from New South Wales, will appear via audio-link from Sydney after being charged by the Australian Federal Police over the alleged incident last year.

The man and woman were both on duty as flight attendants on a trip from Perth to Melbourne in April 2019 when police allege the man committed the offence, causing the woman significant distress.

The woman allegedly sent texts during the flight to a friend about the man’s alleged behaviour and her distress.

She first reported the allegations to police after returning to Perth a few days later.

The AFP worked with the Office of the Commonwealth Director of Public Prosecutions to prepare a brief of evidence and charged the man in late 2019.

The man first faced court in March (2020), before the case was delayed by the COVID-19 pandemic.

He has been charged with one count of committing an act of indecency, contrary to section 15(1) of the Crimes (Aviation) Act 1991 (Cth) and section 60(1) of the Crimes Act 1900 (ACT).

The maximum penalty for this offence is seven years’ imprisonment.

AFP Senior Constable Steve Proud said there is no excuse for offensive behaviour in any work place, but unwanted attention can be particularly distressing on a flight, where people are confined in a limited space.

“This case should serve as a warning to people that illegal behaviour in the air will be prosecuted on the ground,” Senior Constable Proud said.

“There is no excuse for these actions on an aircraft or anywhere else - everyone is entitled to be free from harassment, unwanted attention or indecent acts.”

Anyone with information about this matter or anyone who wants to report an incident of sexual harassment during a flight is asked to call Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.

Media enquiries

AFP Media: (02) 5126 9297

National Security Hotline

Read the AFP Annual Report 2019-20

The Australian Centre to Counter Child Exploitation

Platypus Online: Read. Discover. Enjoy.