A grandfather-of-25 has avoided jail after slapping a TV executive on a mid-air flight after ‘marching through a plane with his penis exposed’.
Hatam Awad Hamad, 56, had downed five glasses of wine as he travelled from New Orleans to London on a British Airways flight on Wednesday.
A court heard he exposed his genitals just three inches from the face of a fellow passenger before slapping him in the chest with his hand.
He confronted the Palestinian and American dual national – but he ‘responded by grunting’ and exposed himself to another passenger, the court was told.
Hamad is a father-of-nine and runs a family petrol station in New Orleans, USA.
He was handed a six-week jail sentence at Uxbridge Magistrates Court on Friday, suspended for one year, after he admitted assault by beating.
He was also ordered to pay £600 in compensation to the victim, and a surcharge of £115 and costs of £85.
Prosecutor Wendy Barrett said the incident unfolded about six hours into the British Airways BA224 flight on October 10.
Reading a statement from the passenger, she said: ‘He explains he was travelling with his wife and two children, aged eight and five, he had just taken his daughter to the bathroom and returned to his seat.’
The passenger, who was not in court, added in the statement: ‘After about five minutes a male, Mr Hamad, came down the aisle to me, directly to my chair where I was sitting with my kids.
‘My daughter was awake and my son was asleep. This male had his penis out and exposed within three inches of my face.
‘At this time I felt shocked and then attempted to stand up and shouted at the male, “what are you doing?”
‘I was very concerned by what he might do to me and my family and the other passengers around us.’
Cabin crews took Hamad to the back of the aircraft where he was guarded for the rest of the flight.
Hamad initially denied the attack and told police he boarded the flight alone, drank ‘five cups of wine’ then went to sleep.