A man was arrested after it was claimed he had a racist rant onboard a United Airlines flight bound for San Francisco, which led to it being diverted to Auckland.
The New Year’s Day flight, which originated in Sydney, was diverted after a passenger failed to listen to crew on Sunday afternoon.
Passengers have recounted the man allegedly going into a verbally abusive, racist rant when two other passengers described as being of Indian or Pakistani descent, seated on either side, talked over him.
A video shared on social media captured the man, after this exchange, yelling at an air attendant who tried to calm him down.
He was heard saying that it would be “cool” if the flight was turned around.
“If you guys treat people right on these things, you see two last names the same don’t put someone else in the middle of them,” he said. “I’m not yelling … you want to hear me f****** yelling.