An Irishman who refused to put on a Covid masks throughout a flight from Dublin to New York and uncovered his rear finish to a flight attendant faces as much as 20 years in jail if convicted of assault, the US justice division stated on Friday.

Shane McInerney, 29, from Galway, was alleged to have precipitated the disturbance on a Delta Airways flight on 7 January.

He appeared earlier than a decide in New York every week later and was charged with “deliberately assaulting and intimidating a member of a flight crew”, in keeping with a prison criticism unsealed on Friday.

It stated the suspect repeatedly refused to put on a masks, threw a beverage can and hit a passenger within the head, and “pulled down his pants and underwear and mooned a flight attendant and passengers”.

A court docket spokesman stated that if convicted of this felony cost, McInerney could possibly be sentenced to twenty years in jail.

McInerney was headed to Florida to take up a job at a soccer academy.

He was launched on $20,000 bail as he awaits trial.

The Federal Aviation Administration stated in January 2021 it could observe a zero-tolerance coverage towards individuals who reject federal guidelines mandating mask-wearing on US home flights.

This got here as flight attendants reported a excessive variety of incidents of verbal and bodily abuse from travellers who refuse to put on a masks.

An American Airways jetliner headed from Miami to London turned around in mid-flight on Thursday as a result of a passenger refused to put on a Covid masks.


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