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BA sued over claims pilot assaulted orphanage girls

Simon Wood pictured during a visit to an orphanage in Nairobi, Kenya in 1999. Credit: PA

British Airways is to be sued for damages over claims one of its pilots sexually abused children in African schools and orphanages.

Lawyers representing 16 young girls and women who claim First Officer Simon Wood assaulted them said the airline bears responsibility because he carried out the alleged attacks while on stopovers.

An inquest is due to be held into the death of Wood, 54, who was struck by a train in August while awaiting a court appearance accused of indecently assaulting a young girl and making indecent images of children.

Law firm Leigh Day said Wood allegedly molested youngsters during stopovers in Kenya, Uganda and Tanzania while flying for British Airways. Some of their clients are aged just eight.


Man sues BA after flying to Grenada, not Granada

British Airways offered around £220 per passenger in compensation. Credit: Steve Parsons/PA Archive

An American dentist is suing British Airways after the airline sent him to Grenada rather than Granada.

Edward Gamson from North Bethesda, Maryland, was planning a quick stop off in the Spanish city ahead of a planned conference last September.

However, he ended up in the Caribbean and claims he didn't notice the error because his e-tickets did not mention the airport code or flight duration.

According to NBC News, Gamson says he asked the flight attendant twenty minutes into his journey from London why the flight was heading west, when he was told he was on his way to the West Indies.

BA offered him and his partner around £220 and 50,000 air miles. However, Gamson decided to sue, saying the cost of missed hotel, train and tour bookings had cost him more than $34,000 (£20,000).

The airline says it will not comment on the ongoing litigation, while the company's lawyers did not respond to NBC's calls for a response.

British Airways flight diverted as passenger gives birth

File photo dated of British Airway tailfins Credit: Tim Ockenden/PA Wire

A flight was forced to make an emergency landing after a passenger went into premature labour and gave birth on board.

The 30-year-old woman, who was 26 weeks into her pregnancy, was one of 296 passengers aboard the British Airways Boeing 777 which was flying from Nigeria to London.

The crew diverted to Palma in Majorca when the woman went into labour. BA crew helped medical staff based at the airport with the birth.

British Airways refused to fly Yashika to Mauritius

British Airways have refused to fly Yashika Bageerathi to Mauritius, the home affairs select committee heard today.

The A-level student is currently inside Yarl's Wood Removal Centre awaiting deportation, despite the campaign to enable her to stay to complete her exams.


BA plane turns back to Heathrow after 'engine surge'

A British Airways plane had to turn back to Heathrow Airport after experiencing engine problems on take-off.

BA said the aircraft, an Airbus A319 bound for Lyon in France had "an engine surge" and landed safely at Heathrow following the incident at around 9pm last night.

A BA spokesman said, "A flight experienced what's known as an 'engine surge' as it took off from Heathrow, but it returned and touched down safely.

"We have also scheduled a larger aircraft to operate to Lyon to ensure we can get all our customers there as soon as possible. We can understand how frustrating the delay to their plans must be."

BA: Scottish independence could have 'positive impact'

Scottish independence could be “a positive development” for the UK’s flagship airline British Airways, the chief executive of the firm’s parent group has said.

According to The Scotsman, Willie Walsh, chief executive of International Airlines Group (IAG), said the Scottish Government’s policy on air passenger duty (APD) meant that a Yes vote would be “marginally positive” for the industry.

British Airways chief executive Willie Walsh. Credit: PA

Mr Walsh told BBC Breakfast: "It might be marginally positive because, I suspect, the Scottish Government will abolish air passenger duty because they recognise the huge impact that tax has on their economy.

“So, it is probably going to be a positive development, if it does happen, for British Airways.”

Read: Ryanair boss backs Scottish independence 'if taxes cut'

Ryanair confirms flight cancellations and delays

Ryanair has confirmed a number of flight cancellations and has predicted significant delays and further cancellations for the rest of the day.

Ryan Air has confirmed cancellations. Credit: Ryan Air

The list of cancellations, posted on its website, comes amid warnings to passengers that European flights in the next two days are likely to encounter delays and disruptions as Air Traffic Control staff are planning to strike in Italy and Portugal.

How to check if your flight is affected by the strikes

Passengers planning on flying to Europe in the next two days are likely to encounter delays and disruption to European flights as Air Traffic Control staff are planning to strike in Italy and Portugal.

Airlines are advising customers, particularly those on short-haul flights, to check their websites for the status of their flights, see below for details on where to check the status of your flight.

easyjet will advise all affected passengers on flights into and out of Lisbon and on flights to and from Milan Malpensa via email. Customers can also check their flights on the airline's Flight Tracker page.

British Airways have also re-timed a number of flights to avoid the strike period and have made some cancellations. The airline advised passengers to check its website for up-to-date information concerning flights departing in the next two days.

Ryanair has a list of cancelled flights on their website and has predicted significant delays and further cancellations on Wednesday 29 January. Customers can also check the website for information on how to apply for a refund and how to rebook your cancelled flight.

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