Naked passenger arrested for disrupting Virgin Australia flight

By AP   May 28, 2024 | 09:48 pm PT
Naked passenger arrested for disrupting Virgin Australia flight
A Virgin Australia aircraft. Photo courtesy of the airline
A man accused of running naked down the aisle of an Australian domestic flight, knocking down a flight attendant and forcing the plane to turn back, was arrested by police at the airport, officials said on Tuesday.

The incident happened early in what was scheduled to be a 3 hour and 30 minute Virgin Australia flight on Monday night from the west coast city of Perth to Melbourne on the east coast.

Flight VA696 returned to Perth Airport due to a "disruptive passenger," an airline statement said.

Australian Federal Police officers were waiting for the plane and "the disruptive guest was offloaded," Virgin said.

Police said "officers arrested a man after he allegedly ran naked through the aircraft mid-flight and knocked a crew member to the floor."

"The man was transferred to hospital for assessment, where he remains," a police statement said.

It was not clear how or where on the plane the passenger removed his clothes.

Police expect to order the man by summons to appear in a Perth court on June 14. What charges he will face have yet to be finalized.

The airline apologized to "guests impacted," adding the safety of passengers and crew was its top priority.

Both the airline and police declined comment beyond their statements.

Australian Broadcasting Corp. reported that it understood nobody was injured during the incident.

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