“I don’t want to be served by you lot”: Kiwi man demands to be served by “white girl” on flight
A former New Zealand man has been convicted of racially aggravated abuse after demanding he be served by a “white girl” on a British Airways flight.
According to The New Zealand Herald, Peter Nelson, 46, was awoken by flight attendant Sima Patel-Pryke on the 11-hour flight from Heathrow to Rio de Janeiro and launched into a tirade of abuse.
UK media reported that the father-of-three said: “You Asians think you are better than us, I don’t want to be served by you lot, I’ve paid your wages for the last 20 years.”
His tirade “targeted” Patel-Pryke and reduced the stewardess to tears after he shouted “very loudly” at her and another crew member.
The cabin crew got a restraining kit ready to use on him before threatening Nelson with arrest.
Prosecutor Michael Tanney said that Nelson “subsequently demanded services in the future only from the white member of the crew.”
In Isleworth Crown Court on Friday, a jury delivered a unanimous guilty verdict to one count of racially aggravated abuse on the flight on June 2 last year.
Judge Edward Connell said: “You plainly displayed a contemptuous attitude towards the staff from the outset, when Pryke, simply doing her job, came to wake you in order to take your food order.
“You took immediate offence at her having the audacity in your view to wake you up.
“It seems that that was the beginnings of what turned out to be on your part an opportunity for you to get very upset without any justification at all.
“That manifested itself in the most unpleasant of ways.
“It was thoroughly unpleasant period of conduct by you; such was your conduct that members of staff were called to deal with you and they had cause to contact the pilot.
“It’s quite plain, albeit this wasn’t the most serious case the court hears, that it had an impact on Pryke who we heard in evidence was upset and ended up in tears because of your behaviour.
“It was completely unacceptable and I’m entirely satisfied that it was contributed by that you had drunk a significant amount of alcohol during the course of that flight.
“I accept this conviction will have profound ramifications for you and your employability so I’m just persuaded that this can be dealt with a financial penalty.”
Nelson was fined $NZD3,823, with $955 compensation to his victim and $6690 costs to the prosecution.
Defence lawyer Lauren Sales said that Nelson’s wife has suffered from stress due to the allegations.
“He has lost his job. He was the breadwinner of the family. It is life-changing for Nelson, the two of them have taken the decision to take their children out of their school because it’s an international school,” she said.
“They feel they cannot go to the gates of the school and stand in the playground.”