Scoot flight from Gold Coast to Singapore diverted after man punches another

Scoot said that an Australian man on board punched another passenger, causing crew members and other passengers to step in to break up the fight.
Scoot said that an Australian man on board punched another passenger, causing crew members and other passengers to step in to break up the fight.PHOTO: SCREENGRAB FROM FACEBOOK/7 NEWS

A Scoot flight from Gold Coast to Singapore was diverted to Sydney Airport because of a disruption caused by an unruly passenger on board.

Flight TR7 was scheduled to reach Singapore at 3.15pm on Monday, but was diverted just one hour and 20 minutes into the eight-hour flight.

In a statement on Monday, Scoot said an Australian man on board had punched another passenger. Crew members and other passengers stepped in to break up the fight. "The man was eventually subdued with two restraining kits, with the help of five passengers," the airline added.

A decision was made to divert the flight to Sydney, where the man was handed over to local law enforcement. According to Australian newspaper Brisbane Times, he was met by Australian Federal Police and paramedics at Sydney Airport.

The assaulted passenger told crew members on board that he did not require medical attention.

Passengers were transferred to alternative flights bound for Singapore. The airline said: "In Singapore, Scoot representatives will be meeting with arriving customers to assist them where necessary."

Scoot said the man had appeared normal during boarding and take-off, but began disturbing surrounding passengers after take-off.

The Australian Federal Police told Australian media that a disruptive male passenger was taken into custody at Sydney Airport on Monday from a Scoot flight that departed from Gold Coast. Charges have not been filed against him, Australian media said.

Mr Rico David Garilli, who was on the flight, posted a video of the incident on Facebook. In the video, the unruly man is seen punching another passenger and putting him in a headlock.

Mr Garilli and several other passengers who shared the video on Facebook said the man started drinking after a delay in the flight was announced. In response to queries from The Straits Times yesterday, Scoot said the first delay "was due to a technical issue".

"Scoot will refuse to transport any passenger who is deemed a risk to the safety of the flight," it said. "We apologise for the unpleasantness and inconvenience experienced by the other passengers."

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on January 23, 2019, with the headline 'Flight diverted after man punches another'. Print Edition | Subscribe