A French man has been charged with assault and interfering with flight personnel after he was allegedly caught smoking in an aeroplane toilet.
The 34-year-old has been accused with yelling “I'm French, f*** you!”, at airline staff, the Daily Mail reported.
A criminal complaint filed in New York claims 34-year-old Franck Lebrun "did knowingly and intentionally assault and intimidate a flight crew member and flight attendant of the aircraft" during a flight between Nice and New York on Saturday, the Daily Mail said.
During the incident on Delta Airlines flight 83, crew members suspected that someone had been smoking cigarettes in one of the lavatories and confronted Lebrun, telling him not to smoke.
The Daily Mail reported the complaint as saying: "When Lebrun was observed walking toward the bathroom he was again instructed not to smoke.
"Lebrun appeared intoxicated and smelled of cigarettes and alcohol. Lebrun then approached a female flight crew attendant in an aggressive manner and pushed her away with both hands.
"When the airline attendant instructed Lebrun not to touch her, Lebrun pushed her away again with both hands."
Evidence from FBI agent Janet Ambrisco said the Frenchman, part of a group flying to Honduras, "was instructed several times to return to his seat" and that during "the entire encounter with flight crew members, Lebrun was speaking in a confrontational manner using expletives in English and made other comments in French."
A federal air marshal on the plane intervened and instructed Lebrun to return to his seat. Two other marshals confronted him again when he continued to yell expletives and then "aggressively positioned himself toward one of the federal air marshals in a fighting stance".
He was then handcuffed and moved to the rear section of the aircraft.
Lebrun continued to verbally abuse passengers around him, yelling 'I'm French, f*** you!', the document said.
Lebrun was due in federal court this morning.
- © Fairfax NZ News
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