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  • Dec 20, 2014
  • Updated: 11:13am
Malaysia Airlines flight 370
NewsAsia

Co-pilot of Malaysia Airlines flight had 'invited women into cockpit in the past'

Airline was twice prosecuted for allowing passengers with stolen passports to fly

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 12 March, 2014, 12:17am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 12 March, 2014, 9:44am
 

Malaysia Airlines is investigating an Australian television report that the co-pilot on its missing flight had invited two women to stay in the cockpit for the duration of a flight two years ago.

Jonti Roos spoke about her flight on A Current Affair, which aired photographs showing the women in the cockpit.

The airline said it wouldn't comment about the report until its inquiry was complete.

[It] hasn’t been the only airline subject to prosecutions in the region
SECURITY SPECIALIST STEVE VICKERS

Roos said she and her friend were allowed to stay in the cockpit during the entire one-hour flight in December 2011, from Phuket, Thailand, to Kuala Lumpur. Fariq Abdul Hamid and the other pilot talked to them, smoked and posed for photos, she said.

In other breaches of international protocol, it has emerged that Malaysia Airlines has twice been convicted of allowing passengers using stolen passports to fly on their planes.

In 2007, two passengers using passports taken during a burglary in Auckland were allowed to board a flight, despite a computer database warning that flagged the documents as suspect.

As the passengers were checking in, a staff member received an automatically generated directive from New Zealand's Advanced Passenger Processing (APP) system not to board the pair, but ignored the instruction and allowed them on the flight.

The airline received a 12-month suspended sentence over the incident, according to Immigration New Zealand spokesman Marc Piercey.

Watch: What we know about Malaysia Airlines flight MH370

Five years later, the carrier was again found guilty of a similar offence, when a check-in staff member generated a false passport number to allow a passenger to board, despite an APP warning from New Zealand. A New Zealand court fined the Malaysian carrier NZ$5,500 (HK$36,000).

The traveller was a Malaysian national and was the holder of a passport bearing the same number as a passenger on a previous international flight who was arrested in Thailand. It is unclear why the Malaysian was not stopped.

Malaysia Airlines declined to comment.

Two Iranian passengers travelling on flight 370 had boarded with stolen passports.

Security and risk consultant Steve Vickers, a former head of the Hong Kong police criminal-intelligence bureau, said New Zealand had a particularly effective system, adding that "security checks were a matter for governments, rather than airlines".

"Malaysia Airlines hasn't been the only airline subject to prosecutions around the region," he said.

Cathay Pacific, Chile's LAN Airlines and Aerolineas Argentinas have been fined a combined total of HK$200,000 under similar prosecutions by New Zealand.

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8

This article is now closed to comments

rheal
But it does make you rethink flying with Malaysian Airlines!
phillipquick
Whatever, this doesn't explain why the plane hasn't been found
wallimo
This is a piece of disgusting journalism, using a program that can only loosely be called journalism. I watched the original report on Australian TV and it was hardly credible. These women could have been in the cockpit for 2 minutes or the entire flight. The man in question can't defend himself so it's not really fair to throw these accusations around.
horacejeffry
There was another pilot there. He can talk and be fired. No matter one hour or one minute a person with bad intents only need a few seconds. Only crew should be in the cockpit no one else. Not even kids like what happened in Russia, plane down all killed. Fire the pilot who was also in the cockpit or further damage your reputation MAS!!
nick.morgan.7549
This has nothing to do with the current issue.
However it is a discussion that probably needs to be had at another time on the culture within the airline industry.
The general public would undoubtedly be very surprised at the varying levels of professionalism shown by people entrusted with their lives.
meoii
This story is totally irrelevant to the case at hand. CNN anchors conducted an interview with the co-pilot whilst flying and no one said anything.
ianreid
What a fuss about SFA. It used to be common practice on aircraft worldwide to invite visitors to the cockpits of aircraft, without any problems whatsoever. It only became taboo after 11th September because of American fear and panic that anyone and everyone might be a terrorist bogeyman out to get them.
wallimo
double post :

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