Businessman’s mid-air bust-up


By Paul Thornton

A COMPANY boss has been ordered to do community service after he admitted his part in a mid-air bust-up while flying home from a Spanish island.

David Hamilton, 35, was a passenger on a Globespan flight from Gran Canaria to Edinburgh when he had an argument with another holiday-maker.4-sheriff-court1

He claims he lost the plot after being tripped-up on his way to the toilet.

Despite several warnings to calm down he refused and police at Edinburgh Airport were waiting to arrest him as he alighted.

And at Edinburgh Sheriff Court he was given 80 hours of unpaid work after he pleaded guilty to a breach of the peace.

Fiscal depute Mina Poppius told the court: “About two hours into the flight the cabin crew were attending to the passengers when their attention was drawn to an argument between to males.

“The males were arguing and the discussion became so heated that the accused was asked to calm down.”

Miss Poppuis said Hamilton did return to his seat but tempers soon flared again.

She said: “One of the cabin crew went and spoke to the accused but he continued to argue and raise his voice.

“A short time later the accused was observed to stand up shouting ‘this is f****** bulls***’. He was again arguing with the other male.”

At this point air stewards warned Hamilton that if he did not calm down they would have to call police.

But, Miss Poppius said, Hamilton replied: “Call them, a night in the cells is nothing to me.”

After another brief period of calm Hamilton was again heard shouting and swearing and officers at the Scottish airport were asked to meet him when the plane landed at 7pm.

He told them: “Bulls***, that’s a complete lie.”



His solicitor, Nigel Bruce, said that Hamilton had been provoked by trouble-makers who had been harassing his family but admitted that his client had reacted badly.

Mr Bruce said: “Another person had been misbehaving and was banging on the back of Mr Hamilton’s chair.

“When Mr Hamilton went to the toilet he tripped him up. Instead of dealing with it appropriately he began shouting and swearing.”

Mr Bruce said that Hamilton had done “fairly well” for himself after starting up his own business.

But Sheriff Kathrine Mackie said that recent events made the offence more serious.

She said: “There is no way in the confines of an aircraft that people can get away from this sort of behaviour.

“It’s all the more concerning because of the climate in which we live and because of the concerns that people might have about what is or is not happening on an aircraft.”

Sheriff Mackie ordered Hamilton, of Bonnyrigg, East Lothian, to complete the order within a year.


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