Now Reading
Dutch Airline Wins Court Battle Against Ex-Pilot Who Was Fired For Allegedly Sexually Assaulting Colleagues and Other ‘Transgressive Behaviour’

Dutch Airline Wins Court Battle Against Ex-Pilot Who Was Fired For Allegedly Sexually Assaulting Colleagues and Other ‘Transgressive Behaviour’

a group of airplanes parked at an airport

Dutch flag carrier KLM has won a court battle against a long-serving pilot who was terminated last year after two decades worth of alleged abuse came to light. The ex-pilot took the airline to court to challenge his dismissal and had demanded a payout of around €1.5 million (US $1.64 million).

According to local media reports, the veteran Captain “regularly and seriously misbehaved” towards crew members, as well as ground staff and even passengers.

The myriad allegations made against the pilot included rape, sexual assault, stalking, threats and intimidating behaviour. It is not known whether criminal charges have been made against the pilot but, following an internal investigation, KLM dismissed the pilot last year.

The alleged offences are said to have taken place during a 20-year timespan between 2002 and 2022.

During court proceedings, the Captain argued that the stories that came to light during KLM’s investigation were the stuff of fables and that disgruntled colleagues had organised a smear campaign against him.

One flight attendant alleged that the pilot prevented her from leaving his hotel room and then forced her to have sex with him. The pilot was reportedly suspended for a week when the flight attendant reported the incident to the airline but no further action was taken.

Other reports included the pilot bringing back sex workers to his hotel, getting thrown out of a shop in Moscow because he was drunk and shouting at a wheelchair-bound passenger in Barcelona because he alleged that she had held up the flight.

The pilot has denied all of the allegations made against him.

KLM initially reprimanded the pilot and organised coaching sessions to address his behaviour but eventually decided to fire him with a severance payment of €190,000.

After some of the Captain’s allegations were made public, KLM said it had called in an external investigation agency to find out if there were any other incidents of ‘transgressive behaviour’ at the airline.

“KLM awaits the results of the investigation and will then determine whether further steps need to be taken,” the airline said in a statement last December. The airline is yet to provide an update on the progress of its investigation.

“KLM emphasizes that transgressive behavior is unacceptable and calls on employees to always report if they have or have had to deal with this. KLM has taken note of the reports with dismay,” the statement continued.

A spokesperson for the Amsterdam-based airline noted that reporting processes had been revised in the wake of the controversy.

View Comments (0)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

© 2023 All Rights Reserved.

Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to with appropriate and specific directions to the original content.