Alexander Tung Cuu Le Biography Alexander Tung Cuu Le Wiki
A man apparently filmed punching a flight attendant in the back of the head on an American Airlines flight has been arrested after the plane landed in Los Angeles.
Authorities on Thursday charged Alexander Tung Cuu Le with disrupting a flight crew. If found guilty, he faces up to 20 years in prison.
The incident happened Wednesday on a flight from San Jose del Cabo, Mexico to Los Angeles International Airport. A video posted by another passenger showed a man running after a male flight attendant and beating him up as the crew member walked the other way.
33-year-old Alexander Tung Cuu Le from Orange County, California could face a maximum sentence of 20 years in federal prison after assaulting an @AmericanAir flight attendant, according to @TheJusticeDept. Le was banned from traveling American Air indefinitely. 📹: Donald Hoover pic.twitter.com/7Q6oLknaX9
— Malik Earnest (@MalikEarnest) September 22, 2022
According to an affidavit from the FBI agent, shortly after takeoff he grabbed another flight attendant by the shoulders and asked for coffee. He was told to wait.
As he moved from the back of the plane to an empty seat near the first class cabin, the male flight attendant asked him to return to his assigned seat. Instead, Le remained in a two-fisted fighting stance and waved an arm at the crew member, but failed, according to the affidavit.
The flight attendant was on his way to report the incident to the pilot when he was shot in the back of the neck.
Several passengers “arrested” her and tied her hands and legs with shackles provided by another flight attendant, according to the FBI agent. The injured flight attendant, who spent the rest of the flight with an ice pack on his head, was taken to hospital.
The president of the Association of Professional Flight Attendants, the union representing US flight attendants, said the passenger had engaged in “dangerous and life-threatening behavior”.
“Fortunately the crew and passengers overwhelmed the passenger and the plane landed safely,” union official Julie Hedrick said. “This violent behavior puts the safety of all passengers and crew at risk and must stop.”
Airline spokesman Curtis Blessing said the Americans had banned the man from traveling with the airline. He said the American was helping law enforcement investigate the incident.
According to the Federal Aviation Administration, airlines reported nearly 2,000 unruly passenger crashes this year, up from nearly 6,000 last year, even with a 38% increase in the number of U.S. air travelers.
Most crashes in 2021 and early 2022 involved passengers who refused to wear face masks, but the federal requirement for masks on airplanes and public transportation was lifted by a federal judge in April.
Government data does not indicate how often incidents turn violent, although this is rare. The best-known case involved a young woman who beat up a Southwestern flight attendant on a plane in California, breaking her teeth. The woman was sentenced to 15 months in prison.