Five Saudis charged after drunken forced landing in Sri Lanka

February 7, 2011 (AFP) – Five Saudi Arabian nationals appeared in court in Colombo on Monday after their allegedly drunken misbehaviour on board a flight from Dubai to Indonesia forced the plane to land in Sri Lanka. The men became unruly during the journey, shouting abuse at passengers and refusing to obey orders from cabin crew, police said.

The Etihad Airways flight from Dubai to Jakarta diverted to Sri Lanka’s Bandaranaike International Airport in Katunayake on Sunday night, when the men were arrested.

The magistrates’ court in Colombo released the five men on 100,000 rupees ($900) bail each and ordered them to appear again on February 14, a court official said. Saudi Arabia’s embassy in Sri Lanka declined to comment.