Drunk man who slapped FlyDubai flight attendant has sentence suspended

Egyptian got aggressive when told he could not drink duty-free onboard, even stopping a female passenger from moving away from him.

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DUBAI // A passenger who was sentenced to a year in prison after he slapped a flight attendant and insulted her when she tried to stop him from making a drunken scene on a FlyDubai flight has had his sentence suspended.

Egyptian marine officer MM, 40, was convicted of assaulting the Moroccan flight attendant SA, 26, and causing a half-hour-long disturbance on a flight from Dubai to Alexandria, Egypt, but the Dubai Court of Appeal ruled that his sentence will now be suspended for three years.

He was also convicted of insulting other flydubai employees and possessing and consuming alcohol.

Records show that 15 minutes after the plane took off, on November 26 last year, the defendant requested ice to consume with alcohol he had brought on board.

The attendant explained to him that he was not allowed to consume the alcohol because he had bought it from duty free.

The defendant started shouting and insulting the crew, and when they tried to calm him and explain that he was breaking the rules, he ignored them.

“A female passenger who was seated next to him wrote a note asking to have her seat changed because she was frightened of his behaviour but he stopped her from changing her seat,” the Moroccan flight attendant said.

She then informed the captain of the situation, who told her to try to calm the man down and convince him to hand over the alcohol. But the defendant refused and instead insulted SA.

“He then pushed me to get to the toilet and, when he got out, he slapped me,” she said, adding that the crew had no choice but to confine the defendant to his seat while the plane made an emergency landing in Saudi Arabia. MM was detained and sent back to Dubai.

Egyptian flight attendant AM, 26, testified that he heard the passenger insult other passengers and crew members in Arabic.

“He was using bad words, saying that he cared about no one and that everyone is under his shoes,” AM said. “I helped restrain him to his seat.”