Drunk BA passenger hit crew members, insulted passengers and smashed crockery after being refused alcohol

Emma Langford was warned she could be jailed (Picture: SWNS)
Emma Langford was warned she could be jailed (Picture: SWNS)

A British Airways passenger was restrained in her seat after assaulting crew members, insulting passengers and smashing crockery when she was refused alcohol.

Emma Langford, 47, repeatedly hit staff during the 11-and-a-half hour flight from London to Cape Town in South Africa after she was told she would not get a drink.

She told a fellow passenger “your a*** is massive” in a drunken rage.

A cabin crew manager said in a statement the mum-of-two 'smelt of alcohol' and 'puffed her chest out' before starting to punch him in the galley area of the Boeing 747-400.

Langford later pulled out a tray of plates and glasses, causing them to break on the floor and cut a crew member.

She was eventually restrained with the help of an off-duty police officer and was carried from the aircraft when it landed.

Langford, from Hampshire, initially denied three assault charges but she changed her pleas to guilty on Wednesday morning at the start of her trial at Ealing Magistrates' Court.

She also admitted being drunk on an aircraft, behaving in a threatening manner towards aircraft crew and criminal damage.

Emma Langford, 47, repeatedly hit staff during the 11-and-a-half hour flight (Picture: SWNS)
Emma Langford, 47, repeatedly hit staff during the 11-and-a-half hour flight (Picture: SWNS)

The court heard Langford boarded British Airways flight BA043 from London Heathrow to Cape Town on December 6 last year.

It was scheduled to depart at around 6.15pm and Langford is said to have approached a cabin crew member in the galley 30 minutes after takeoff.

Molda Gribbin, prosecuting, told the court: "She was saying she had paid £4,000 for a seat and £8,000 for two and asked if he could afford that amount but he said he (crew manager) would not comment.

"He was becoming increasingly concerned about the defendant's behaviour.

"She was asked to calm down and return to her seat, but she proceeded to run at a member of staff and chased them away.

"She grabbed the member of staff by both of her shoulders and pushed her into the door.

"Further commotion occurred and she was seen assaulting another person.

"She was again told to sit down and calm down, but at this point she tipped out a tray of plates on the floor and some glasses.

"As the crockery was breaking it caused a small cut on another member of staff.”


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A passenger also said in a statement Langford had attacked her.

She added: "She kicked me in the back of the legs and said 'your a*** is massive.'

"She called me chubby and fat a**e. It was massively offensive and hurt my confidence. I felt humiliated in front of the whole cabin."

Langford has been receiving treatment for mental health issues since the incident and has completed a rehab programme, the court heard.

Anil Vij, in mitigation, said: "She has been deemed to have completed the rehabilitation.

"She wants to put this behind her."

Langford, who will be sentenced on January 3, was warned by magistrate’s she could be jailed for up to two years.

She was bailed until the hearing next month at Isleworth Crown Court.

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