Sunday 19 November 2017

Austrian Holocaust student on 'air rage' charges

Gordon Deegan

A 32-year-old Austrian librarian on his way back from the US where he was studying the Holocaust appeared in court yesterday on three 'air rage' related charges.

A flight with 200 passengers en route from Washington to Vienna was forced to divert to Shannon airport shortly after 7am yesterday following an alleged 'air rage' incident on board involving Harold Albrecht.

At a special sitting of Ennis District Court yesterday, Mr Albrecht was charged with engaging in threatening and insulting behaviour, and with being intoxicated to the extent that he might endanger himself or other persons on board the aircraft.

Giving evidence, Gda Noel O'Rourke said Mr Albrecht made "no reply" when charged.

In court, Insp Tom Kennedy said that gardai were objecting to bail on the grounds that Mr Albrecht was a flight risk as he has no ties in Ireland. The court was told that Mr Albrecht was a professional librarian and was returning from a five-week internship in the US, where he was studying the Holocaust.

His solicitor, Jenny Fitzgibbon, said it was wrong to describe Mr Albrecht as a flight risk, and that gardai had possession of his passport. The judge said that he would grant bail with conditions that Mr Albrecht sign on twice daily at Shannon garda station and lodge his own bond of €300.

Mr Albrecht was remanded on bail to re-appear before Ennis District Court on Monday.

Sunday Independent

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