Alleged Sexual Assault of Passenger by Chief Flight Crew Member During Flight?
A male chief steward of the flight crew is accused of sexually assault upon a female passenger aboard an airplane which operated as Malaysia Airlines flight 20 from Kuala Lumpur to Paris — and there is a video and transcript from the Australian television program Sunday Night which reportedly shows the chief steward apologizing for the incident, according to this article written by Rachel Browne, who is the Social Affairs Reporter for The Sydney Morning Herald.
Mohd Rosli Bin Ab Karim — a married father of three who is 54 years old — allegedly started to massage the legs of 26-year-old passenger Laura Bushney as she attempted to sleep during the flight; and placed her legs over his lap so that she could feel that he had an erection. He then allegedly put his hand inside her pants and touched her genitals.
She was moved to a seat in the first class cabin; but the chief steward approached her again — this time supposedly pleading with her to not escalate the matter further because he had a wife and children. He was reportedly taken away to be questioned by police when the flight landed in Paris, where he remains while the investigation continues.
A brief statement was reportedly released from Malaysia Airlines in response to the allegations:
“Malaysia Airlines can confirm that following allegations by a passenger travelling on flight MH20 from Kuala Lumpur to Paris on 4th August 2014 of inappropriate sexual behaviour by a member of the cabin crew, the member of staff in question has been detained for questioning by the French police.
“Malaysia Airlines expects and accepts nothing short of the highest standards of conduct from its crew and takes any such allegations very seriously.”
Malaysia Airlines has had more than its fair share of problems recently:
- A Boeing 777-2H6ER aircraft which operated as Malaysia Airlines flight 17 from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur had reportedly been shot down by a missile on Thursday, July 17, 2014 in eastern Ukraine near the border with Russia — all of the 298 passengers and flight crew members aboard the aircraft were reportedly killed — resulting in airlines adjusting flight routes to avoid the air space above Ukraine until further notice
- The mysterious disappearance of a Boeing 777-200 aircraft which operated as Malaysia Airlines flight 370 — carrying 227 passengers and 12 members of the flight crew from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing — early in the morning on Saturday, March 8, 2014 somewhere over the Gulf of Thailand en route
- A breach of privacy allegedly occurred by Malaysia Airlines has been claimed by FlyerTalk member Globalist, who received electronic messages containing disturbing content from a fellow passenger on a flight from Singapore to Langkawi; and Globalist supposedly did not give the fellow passenger any personal or contact information
…and now Malaysia Airlines is reportedly burning through its cash reserves at approximately $2.16 million each day — and some FlyerTalk members are reporting lighter passenger loads on airplanes or lower airfares than the competition.
“This is Malaysia Airlines you are talking about”, posted FlyerTalk member RA-wannabe. “It is totally irrational for passengers to continue to fly with them. The service is bad, the lounge is dirty, and everybody working there are either downright dumb or incompetent.”
I have never flown as a passenger on airplanes operated by Malaysia Airlines — and that is only because the opportunity never arose for that to happen — but I disagree with that sweeping statement by RA-wannabe.
While measures could have been taken by Malaysia Airlines to avoid the aforementioned incidents from occurring — such as perhaps avoiding the airspace above eastern Ukraine, even though the airline was not obligate to do so — they supposedly did not occur out of negligence conducted by employees of the airline. In fact, I believe that passengers should support Malaysia Airlines and attempt to fly on their aircraft as often as possible to help the airline get through this rough period — and I would certainly fly as a passenger aboard an airplane operated by Malaysia Airlines if I had the opportunity to do so.
Khazanah Nasional Berhad — the strategic investment fund of the Government of Malaysia — had submitted a formal request to the Board of Directors of Malaysian Airline System Berhad earlier this month to “undertake a selective capital reduction and repayment exercise of MAS’ ordinary shares”, which should help the airline.
Of course, that is no excuse for what allegedly happened to Laura Bushney on August 4, 2014; and if the chief steward is found guilty of what he is accused of doing, he should be punished to the fullest extent of the law — but should that cast another negative pall over the already-beleaguered Malaysia Airlines?
“The 26-year-old disability support worker told the program she was scared to travel on the airline following the disappearance of MH370 and the shooting down of MH17.” Am I the only person who finds this statement irrelevant to the situation which allegedly occurred?
What are your thoughts?