The Melbourne Magistrates Court has rejected the bail application of former Virgin Airlines employee Paul Sant, as he has been accused of making hoax calls that misled air traffic.
The decision came following the 19-year-old’s filing of the bail application after he was charged for making around 16 unauthorized hoax calls. He reportedly conducted the radio transmissions from September 5 to November 3, which affected the flights at Melbourne and Avalon Airports. He misled the pilots and air traffic controllers.
Why did the Virgin Airlines employee lawyer apply for bail? Why was the application rejected?
Defense lawyer Perm Chaya represented the Virgin Airlines’ ex-employee and told the court that the teen was being kept in prison with people belonging to their 40s and 50s. He also said that those offenders are known for consuming drugs in huge amount, which might affect Sant as well. The lawyer defended the hoax caller saying that he has learned his lesson and should be granted bail.
Police opposed the bail application. The court heard Constable Jonathan Croft saying that if the man was released on bail, he might prove to be a danger to the lives of air travelers. The incident on October 27 was discussed in court. The court heard that Sant made a transmission and told a Virgin Airlines flight to “go around”. As a result, the pilot had to abort the scheduled landing of the plane. The pilot took a loop for another 15 minutes because of the call, Croff said.
When was the Virgin Airlines employee arrested?
The Melbourne teen was taken into custody last week after police claimed that he admitted his crime to three of his friends. The officers said that he told them that he threw the radio transmitter into a Caroline Springs lake. As the police could not find the transmitter, they feared he would use it again to make illegal calls.
On the other hand, prosecutor Kathy Piechutowska called former Virgin Airlines employee Paul Sant a danger to society if released. “Given that he’s an avid fan of aviation, there’s a risk he may be tempted to continue making these calls,” she said as quoted by the ABC. “It’s a present and real danger that one of the aircraft may not be able to follow the instructions it’s given, resulting in loss of life.”