Occupy protester banned from flight home for Christmas

By David Ferguson
Thursday, December 29, 2011 10:28 EDT
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Ryanair jet photo via Flickr
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A protester associated with Occupy London was barred from boarding his flight home to Malaga for Christmas because he was carrying “anarchist” literature, according to a report in the U.K. newspaper The Independent. The demonstrator was kept off the flight because the pilot worried that he would distribute literature and “upset” other passengers.

Police claimed that John Charles Culatto, 34, was “acting suspiciously” when he stopped to talk to other passengers. He was taken into custody as security officials contacted Ryanair, the airline with which Culatto has booked his flight.

Culatto claims he heard security personnel using the word “terrorism” as they searched his belongings. When he arrived at the gate, airport security refused to let him board, saying that the flight’s captain had determined that the protester might disrupt the flight by distributing leaflets to other passengers.

A spokesperson for the Bristol International Airport says that Culatto was kept off the plane because the hour he was delayed by security made him too late to make his flight. Ryanair dismisses Culatto’s charges as “complete and utter rubbish.”

(image via Flickr Creative Commons)

David Ferguson
David Ferguson
David Ferguson is an editor at Raw Story. He was previously writer and radio producer in Athens, Georgia, hosting two shows for Georgia Public Broadcasting and blogging at Firedoglake.com and elsewhere. He is currently working on a book.
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