On 30 June, a group of young people related to YouTuber and beauty influencer @KaiserCoby was denied boarding on Flybe flight BE110 to Birmingham at Amsterdam Airport.
The aircraft (Dash 8-400 reg. G-ECOC) eventually left Amsterdam with a delay of three hours. The group itself rebooked on a Eurostar high-speed train.
The group and @KaiserCoby bitterly complained about racial profiling and discrimination on social media, prompting a reaction from Flybe:
Passengers refused boarding BE110 Amsterdam to Birmingham Sunday 30th June 2019
A Flybe spokesperson comments as follows:
We would like to confirm that Flybe has concluded an investigation into the incident at the departure gate in Amsterdam on Sunday 30th June 2019, and stands by its decision in having refused boarding to the passengers involved because of their disruptive behaviour; and it can also confirm our Customer Relations’ team has been in contact with a family member and some of the passengers involved.
Following the receipt of reports and verbal confirmation from all relevant parties, including the national police agency whose officers were called to intervene, we can report the following findings against the specific allegations made:
- At no stage were any passports ‘seized or confiscated’ and at no stage did Flybe nor the Dutch police remain in possession of any such personal documentation
- Flybe’s third-party ground services’ agents did feel threatened by the aggressive behaviour and language used towards them by this group of passengers
- That the snippets of video footage posted by the passengers served to misinterpret the full conversation relating to the word ‘disgusted’ which was used by one of the Dutch-speaking gate agents when referring to the fact she was ‘disgusted’ by their behaviour and aggressive attitude.
There was no intention for this to be communicated or received as a personal insult to any of the passengers involved. Flybe has taken this allegation extremely seriously and investigated it as a matter of urgency. We expect all our customers at all times to be treated with respect and courtesy by our staff which includes our third-party agents. If, at any time we believe that this has been compromised, then we would not hesitate to take the necessary steps to rectify it.
The safety and security of our passengers and crew is Flybe’s number one priority and, as such, we have a zero tolerance policy with any form of disruptive behaviour that might in any way compromise this.
End of statement
To which @KaiserCoby replied:
“Everything in this statement is false. But I see that covering up this situation to make you look innocent. Is more important than the priority of your paying customers. We will now be going to the press with the longer version of the videos and we will be seeking legal action”.
A thread posted by @KaiserColby on Twitter was available on Internet on lithium.com. It was removed from this website at the request of Flybe because it contained images of Flybe staff who did not give permission to be filmed.