The little known alcohol-on-planes rule that cost a VERY drunk passenger $750 – as he admits having a screaming meltdown after landing at Sydney Airport
- Passenger became intoxicated on Air Canada flight
- Hardik Patel, 46, was arrested at Sydney Airport
- He had been drinking his own bottle of Bacardi
A drunk passenger who only drew attention to himself in the last ten minutes of a 15-hour international flight after drinking his own alcohol on board has been fined $750.
Hardik Patel was arrested at Sydney Airport after Air Canada crew reported he had become aggressive shortly before AC33 from Vancouver touched down.
When cabin crew realised the 46-year-old was intoxicated they discovered and confiscated a 1 litre bottle of Bacardi and 1 litre water bottle containing a liquid smelling strongly of alcohol.
Australian Federal Police officers who met Patel at Gate 30 about 10am on February 2 observed he had a ‘flushed face and a strong odor of alcohol coming from his person’.
A drunk passenger who had been consuming his own alcohol on an aircraft only drew attention to himself in the last ten minutes of a 15-hour international flight. Stock image
According to a statement of facts tendered in court Patel was able to walk unassisted but became unsteady if he had to move even slightly.
‘He had poor ability to understand instructions and indifferent demeanour which escalated to being abusive towards police,’ the statement said.
‘Police opinion is that the accused was well under the influence. Police advised the accused that it is an offence to consume your own alcohol… while on an aircraft.’
Patel’s responses were ‘largely aggressive and incoherent’, according to the statement of facts.
‘Police further advised the accused that they had contacted his wife and that she would be attending the airport to pick him up.
‘Police explained that they would escort the accused to the pickup area with him until his wife arrived to ensure that he would safely depart.’
Hardik Patel was arrested at Sydney Airport after Air Canada crew reported he had become aggressive shortly before AC33 from Vancouver touched down. Stock image
Patel, from Rooty Hill in western Sydney, was not finished being a nuisance, according to the statement of facts.
‘The accused, while still verbally aggressive, did eventually comply with police directions and departed to the waiting area out the front of the terminal.’
‘While in the waiting area, the accused continued to ask police why he was arrested and was informed that it had been explained previously.
‘The accused became more verbally aggressive and argumentative towards police officers, yelling and screaming and trying to engage with members of the public.’
According to the statement of facts, police then decided to arrest Patel due to his level of intoxication, ‘for his own safety and welfare and the welfare and safety of those around him’.
‘The accused continued his abuse towards police and yelling at members of the public.’
When Patel faced Downing Centre Local Court on Monday he pleaded guilty to one count of behaving in an offensive and disorderly manner in an aircraft.
Magistrate Jennifer Atkinson convicted Patel and fined him $750.
The Civil Aviation and Safety Authority states on its website that airline passengers can only consume alcohol provided by cabin crew during a flight.
The Civil Aviation and Safety Authority states on its website airline passengers can only consume alcohol provided by cabin crew during a flight. Stock image
Read more at DailyMail.co.uk