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Drunk Indian-origin man seeking sex on Delhi-London flight jailed

world Updated: Mar 07, 2015 11:43 IST
Prasun Sonwalkar

A heavily drunk Indian-origin passenger travelling from New Delhi to London who pestered a schoolgirl for sex during the flight has been jailed for four months after being convicted in a London court of sexual touching.

Manjit Singh Sidhu, 38, a resident of Leicester in the east Midlands, was travelling on a Jet Airways flight, and insisted on alcohol even though the crew tried to prevented him from consuming more.

The Isleworth Crown Court was told this week that Sidhu then pawed a 14-year-old schoolgirl sitting behind his seat, and told her he wanted to have sex with her, while she was flying home with classmates from an educational trip to Nepal.

Reports from Leicester said Sidhu also engaged the teenager in conversation about Bangkok's infamous red-light district, prostitutes, transsexuals and drugs during the flight last year. He pleaded guilty to being drunk on the aircraft but was cleared of assault.

Prosecutor Rory Keane told the court: “He was persistent in drinking on the plane and the cabin crew attempted to prevent him having any more. He then tried to order drinks in the name of the passenger next to him, and when staff intervened he was abusive towards them.”

Keane said the teenager had made a statement saying: “The man turned his head around and asked me where I had been and said he was interested in travelling, and made references to Bangkok's red-light district, prostitutes, transsexuals, drugs and sex.”

The schoolgirl did not want to continue the conversation and put on headphones to watch a film, but she was interrupted later by Sidhu, who came stumbling down the aisle and perched himself on the armrest next to her, according to a report in Leicester Mercury, a leading daily in the east Midlands.

The teenager’s statement said: “He tried to stroke my head and brushed my hair away and stroked my face and neck with his hand three or four times. I felt insecure and unable to say anything. He said, ‘I want to **** you’, and when I told him I was only 14 years old he said, ‘I'll wait until you are eighteen’.”

The teenager reported Sidhu to a teacher, and the police were waiting for him when the plane landed, the reports said. Sidhu was also ordered to sign the sex offenders register for the next seven years.