‘Thirsty’ mum attacks British Airways staff after they refuse to serve her booze

A “thirsty” single mum has admitted attacking three British Airways cabin crew after they refused to serve her alcohol.

Emma Langford, 47, assaulted them on the flight to South Africa from London Heathrow, punching the manager and kicking another in the back of the legs while screaming: “You have a massive a**e”.

She then pulled out trays of stowed plates and glasses, cutting another member of staff during the incident on December 6, 2018.

Langford, from Old Baising, Hampshire, was eventually restrained by an off-duty police officer before being carried off the plane when it touched down in Cape Town.

Molda Gribbin, prosecuting, told Ealing Crown Court: "About 30 minutes after take-off the defendant came to the galley and she raised her voice and was agitated.

"She was saying that she had been on the plane for ages and was thirsty and wanted a drink.

"The manager asked the customer not to speak to his crew in such a fashion.

"He could smell alcohol on her and so asked if she had been drinking, but she said 'no'.

"He gave her a bottle of water and she went back to her seat."

Ms Gribbin continued: "A few moments later she approached him again with what he said was 'her chest puffed out.

"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 would not comment.

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

"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.

A statement from one of her victims, read to the court, said: "She kicked me in the back of the legs and said 'your a**e 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 stood in the dock wearing a grey turtle neck jumper, dark trousers, and gold earrings.

She spoke only to confirm her name, address, date of birth, and nationality as well as entering three guilty pleas for charges of criminal damage, being drunk on an aircraft, and behaving in a threatening, abusive, insulting and disorderly manner towards cabin crew.

The court heard how Langford had since received treatment from mental health services and had gone through a rehab programme.

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

"She wants to put this behind her."

But magistrates branded her actions "so serious" she could face up to two years in prison

Chairman of The Bench Pamela Ullstein told her: "The offence took place in a very confined space and the aircraft was airborne.

"It could have put other passengers at risk."

Langford was bailed until her sentencing hearing at Isleworth Crown Court on January 3.

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