Don’t you know who I am? Chinese ‘professor’ berates airline staff for refusing to allow her to board after she was late for flight

Passenger who told airport staff she was an academic threatened to hit woman who refused to let her go through the gate

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 16 May, 2018, 6:14pm
UPDATED : Thursday, 17 May, 2018, 10:22am

A woman who missed her flight at an airport in northwest China was filmed threatening to assault airline employees and told them she should be allowed to board because she was a university professor.

Footage of the woman threatening to beat a woman at the Zhongchuan Lanzhou Airport in Gansu province after she was denied permission to board was widely shared on video news platform PearVideo on Wednesday.

Many users said they recognised the woman as an academic at Northwest Normal University in the city, but the university did not respond to requests to confirm her identity.

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However, a student at the university said the clip of Friday’s heated row had been shared widely among her schoolmates.

“We all saw the video and everybody knows about it,” said the student, who was on duty at the general office of the university’s tourism college on Wednesday. She would not confirm if the woman was a professor at the university.

In the video, the middle-aged passenger is seen chasing a young woman wearing the uniform of China Eastern Airlines while shouting, “I said my students were all majoring in civil aviation services … I’m a university professor. What did you say to me? You say that again and I will slap you in the face. Do you believe it or not?”

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A male ground staff member and a police officer intervened and tried to separate the two. The airline worker explained that the passenger had sworn at her, before telling the woman: “You were late. You insisted in asking me [to getting you aboard],” she added.

The passenger then responded with more curses, saying that the worker had asked for it.

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Staff at the airport’s police bureau said the passenger was being unreasonable.

An official working there told news portal “Our police officer didn’t know exactly what they said before he arrived … but the issue is that the plane’s boarding time was over at that point. You know when boarding closes they can’t get aboard, whether she’s a professor or not,” said the official.

However, the official said the issue had eventually been resolved when the pair apologised to each other and police will take no further action.

The university has said it will speak to police before it decides whether it needs to respond to the incident.