20 year old Rafik Boutiche and his friend Islam Fessih, 19, were travelling back to London from Faro after visiting a festival in the Algarve, when they were removed from the Ryanair flight by the Portuguese Police because Rafik was “wrongfully accused of shoving a stewardess”.
Islam wrote on twitter "There was a free seat next to me but the air hostess refused to let him sit there and accused him of punching her when the whole plane has his side."
Rafik had a seat in the back of the airplane and when he saw a free seat closer to his friend Islam, he went to sit down there. Islam said “he sat in front of me because there was a free seat, but she said he had to move.”Adding that Rafik followed the order from the stewardess, stood up and made his way to the back of the plane where he may have accidently come into contact with the crew member.
According to Islam, other passengers on the plane had changed seats prior to Rafik and the crew members didn’t object.
The stewardess called the Police and footage, that Islam recorded, shows the Portuguese Police manhandling the passenger, while other passengers are screaming “you’re hurting him!” He then, after some struggle with the Police, left the airplane willingly. The video has since been shared thousands of times on social media.
Rafik and his friend Islam had to spend another night in Portugal, pay for a new hotel and a new flight. From his hotel room Rafik told Mirror Online “My hand is cut up, my ankle has been sprained and my neck is hurting me. We are just two young lads, we’re not looking for trouble, we just wanted to get back home. I’ve never experienced anything like this, I never thought it was possible to go through what I’ve gone through. It’s made me very emotional.”
The following day Ryanair Customer Service sent Islam an email informing him he is prohibited from flying with Ryanair due to his “disruptive behaviour”. The email, wihch was shared on social media, reads “Please do not make any reservations with Ryanair, as once you log your personal details, our system will highlight your reservation and you will be denied travel without refund.”