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Woman convicted of "interfering with flight crew."

Editorial Staff

It's one of those interesting differences between English and American. The American charge of "interfering with flight crew" does not involve, as it would in English, a sexual act. But given that there was an assault, the American charge is clear.

On 21 January, a 24 year old woman from Australia was flying on United Airlines from Melbourne to LAX when passengers reported that her behaviour was unacceptable. Adau Akui Atem Mornyang appeared to be intoxicated and was verbally and physically abusive to crew and other passengers during the flight, the jury found.

"According to the evidence presented at trial, several hours into the flight, passengers approached a flight attendant to complain about Mornyang’s disruptive behaviour, which included flailing her arms and yelling obscenities and racial slurs. When the flight attendant approached to assess the situation, Mornyang began to shout at him and then slapped him across his face. The flight attendant attempted to restrain Mornyang until federal air marshals could assist. The federal air marshals were forced to stay with Mornyang in the rear galley of the plane for the remainder of the flight," US federal authorities, which have jurisdiction over matters on aircraft, said in a statement.

She has been remanded for reports and sentencing on 14 March and faces a maximum of 21 years in jail.

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