Former model Hannah Lee Pierson is accused of threatening to blow up her Air New Zealand flight between Melbourne and Auckland on November 7, 2020 after being told by cabin crew that a glass of wine on board isn’t free, according to court documents.
She is said to have become abusive towards flight attendants, and was ultimately handcuffed and strapped to her seat to keep her out of the galley of the aircraft.
Ms. Pierson has pled guilty to disorderly conduct and abusive behavior charges stemming from her response to the price of wine that she “I don’t give a f–” demanding that they get her “a f—– wine.” Then she declared she would “f—– get it” herself.
Cabin crew moved the woman into a vacant row on the aircraft to keep her out of the galley. Fearing the woman was about to attack, flight attendants handcuffed her and used seat belt extenders to tie her to a seat.
Halfway through the flight the woman became tired from the ordeal and fell asleep. She woke up on approach into Auckland, however, and “continued her abusive tirade.”
She was released on bail pending sentencing June 23. Bizarrely, her lawyer has requested dismissing the case rather than imposing a criminal conviction “because a criminal conviction would result in travel consequences.” At a minimum Air New Zealand should ban her for life, and Qantas should as well. Given fifth freedom rights on trans-tasman routes that should leave options to travel between these two cities again at some point in the future.