The incident, which occurred Thursday on a British Airways flight bound for John F. Kennedy International Airport, resulted in the arrest of Iurii Chumak, 53.
In a misdemeanor criminal complaint FBI Agent Thais Canin reported that the flight attendant has just provided coffee to Chumak when she turned away from him to serve other passengers across the aisle in row 42. As she “bent over slighty” to pour coffee, Chumak allegedly groped her.
A second flight attendant, Canin added, saw Chumak “grab the first flight attendant’s genital area” and immediately approached the passenger and placed him in restraints. The second attendant told the FBI that a male passenger had previously complained that Chumak--drinking from a bottle of Dewar’s--had “bothered and verbally abused” his wife.
|"This will make a great addition to the team"|
Chumak appeared Saturday in U.S. District Court for arraignment, and was ordered held on an Immigration and Customs Enforcement detainer.
Upon hearing of this incident, Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano immediately ordered that Chumak be hired as a pre-flight screener for the TSA.
"This is exactly the sort of person we need to screen and humiliate passengers," Napolitano told us. "Anyone with this much enthusiasm would do a great job for us." Chumak will start his new job next Monday, working out of Newark International Airport.