Korean Air “nut rage” exec jailed for a year

Heather Cho avoids possible maximum 10-year sentence
A former Korean Air executive who forced a plane to return to the gate after nuts were served in a bag rather than bowl, has been jailed for a year. Heather Cho, who was vice-president of the airline, avoided a possible maximum sentence of 10 years.
The plane she was on had been taxiing at New York’s JFK airport on December 5 when witnesses said she became angry because she was served macadamia nuts, which she had not asked for, that were still in a bag and not in a bowl.
Witnesses testified that Cho had struck a crewmember with the service manual. She ordered the plane to return to the gate and told the chief steward to get off.
“This is a case where human dignity was trampled upon,” Judge Oh Sung-woo said. She treated the flight “as if it was her own private plane. It is doubtful that the way the nuts were served was so wrong.”
The judge also said Cho had failed to show enough remorse, even after she submitted letters to the court apologising for the incident.
Cho, the daughter of Korean Air’s chairman, publicly apologised and resigned from all her posts at the airline in December. Prosecutors had requested a three-year prison sentence on charges of breaking aviation law, assault and interfering in an investigation. But Cho’s defence team argued that aviation safety had not been violated as the plane was still being pushed by a truck away from the gate.
TTG Digital


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