The long arm of the law was in motion at Buenos Aires: Air France crew detained after passenger complains “not receiving her upgrade”


Part of an Air France crew flying between Paris CDG and Buenos Aires was detained for six hours by the airport police upon arrival in Argentina as the daughter of a former Deputy Minister of Justice in Argentina was “very unhappy about her treatment on board“. French cabin crew union SNPNC explains on Facebook.

The passenger was travelling on board Air France flight AF228 to Buenos Aires on 29 October 2017. Apparently, she asked for an upgrade to business class but was denied the upgrade as the business class was fully booked. In-flight the same passenger asked to change her seat again due to the “inappropriate behaviour” of her neighbour. The crew didn’t notice anything particular but complied with the passenger’s request and assigned her a new seat.

After landing and following a complaint from the same passenger, part of the crew was forced to go to the airport police station. After staying there for six hours, the crew was released, but at the hotel, an injunction was handed over to the crew to report to the Buenos Aires court the next morning at 8:30. The crew became aware that the passenger was the daughter of a former Deputy Minister of Justice and now a Buenos Aires magistrate.

The next morning the crew was sent to a courtyard and the purser was separated from the rest of the crew and locked in a 1 m2 room without the possibility to sit nor drink and eat for several hours. Two guards were constantly watching him.

After several hours, he could finally speak to a lawyer to file a complaint about his treatment. The other crew members were heard for many hours, but the purser was interrogated only at 20:00. Next to the judge, the father of the passenger was also present to interrogate the crew members, in Spanish.

At the end of the day, everyone was released without charges and without excuses. The shocked crew was repatriated to France.

The SNPNC wrote to Jean-Yves Le Drian, Minister of Foreign Affairs, asking him to open an investigation. Another letter sent to the Ambassador of Argentina in France explains the circumstances of this case. The union is currently investigating the possibilities of legal recourse to obtain redress for the harm suffered.


  1. Reuters: “Chairman Jean-Marc Janaillac expressed his indignation to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs about the arbitrary detention conditions that the Air France crew were subjected to,” Air France-KLM said in a statement on Tuesday.

    “Air France has asked the relevant authorities to shed light on this case.”

  2. France’s Foreign Ministry has demanded an explanation from the Argentine authorities, a ministry official told Reuters.

    A spokeswoman for Argentina’s Foreign Ministry said it was investigating the conduct of the airport police with the security ministry.

    “If they were excessive in their use of force their superiors will decide what to do,” the spokeswoman said.

  3. Very simple, Air France should blacklist all the parties involved from EVER flying on their aircraft again.

  4. Don’t blame the police only, blame the court authorities! Dictature behavior, and Middle Ages manners! Poor crew!?

  5. This happened on an Air France aircraft and NOT on Argentinian soil therefore the local police, not the Argentinian courts have no jurisdiction to interfere with the lawful instructions given by the crew. Had this been my crew I would have strutted them all to go to the “” Embassy rather than go to a court house for a cangaroo court. The courts know very well they have no jurisdiction for any incident on board another sovereign states aircraft that didnt happen on their soil.

  6. Sorry predictive texting grr “ nor the Argentinian courts have any”
    “ i would have instructed them”

  7. France should push for an investigation and get an official apology from the Argentine government. The people responsile for this nonsense should be banned from ever flying AF and have their Schengen Visa canceled.

  8. I would how profitable that flight is over all and then choose action. Routes are cut throat and a make or break part of the Airline gig. But what if these arogant Argentine crazies decided to throw that flight crew in prison? An airline is leaving itself open to serious crew defection if they do not take this very seriously.
    No.Air France needs to take the safety of their flight crew very seriously in light of the fact this happened because some politician’s kid had a poot over seat assignments.
    Think if the child of an American politician had tried to pull this. They would likely be banned from flying on any airline period and their daddy the political big shot would be swarmed by press and hostile lawyers.
    Apparently Argentine politics is still run like a crime syndicant.
    American politics are as corrupt and bad as they have ever been in the United States and there.are arrogant ass people in power that might have tried this But I doubt that flight crew would have been detained. The kid of the political ass might be under some scrutiny. Argentina needs to wake up.
    They forget where they get alot of their military equipment from. FRANCE.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.