A “foul-mouthed and violent” Russian medical doctor, Vadim Bondar was overpowered and tied up by male passengers after causing terror on an Aeroflot flight from Bangkok to Moscow.
Aeroflot is the flag carrier and largest airline of the Russian Federation.
The passengers tied Bondar with a belt, and he remained restrained for four hours until the aircraft landed safely in Moscow.
According to an eyewitness, the 43 year-old anaesthetist had been drinking rum on the ten hour flight even though the airline bans alcohol in economy class on this route.
Local Russian media reports that the “extremely aggressive” doctor was “seeking to open the emergency exit”.
One passenger said, “He had two bottles of alcohol on him and at some point tried to open an emergency exit.
“The crew and fellow passengers tried to calm him down, but he kept screaming and yelling. He cried when his arms and hands were bound.
“He kept sobbing and saying ‘my hands are tied, I can’t breathe.”
Aeroflot spokeswoman Vera Abanina said, “The economy class passenger while quite obviously drunk was rudely violating public order.
“He was extremely aggressive, threatening and humiliating the flight attendants.
“He screamed and did everything to create maximum discomfort to other flight passengers.
“Two bottles of alcohol were found and confiscated from the passenger. He did not react to verbal and written warnings from the crew.
“Other passengers and the crew acted together and fixed the rule breaker in a seat using whatever means they managed to find until the end of the flight.”
The “air hooligan” was handed to police on arrival in Moscow and underwent a medical check. A decision will be made on any charges.
Bondar admitted he did drink rum but “only to pass the time while the plane was going through turbulence”.
“Perhaps I asked the flight attendants too often for water. I was told to return to my seat in a rude manner,” he told journalists in Moscow.
He later apologised to passengers for “causing inconvenience”.
He also told a Russian TV channel: “First of all, there were no demands for hijacking anything. The belt was pushing into my jugular vein and larynx which made breathing very hard.”
He also claimed an “unknown medication” was injected into him and that a large cash sum – around £1,000 – was missing from his hand luggage after the plane landed.
He said he would talk to lawyers about his treatment on the flight.
Source: The Sun