An English businessman told a court his offensive, foul-mouthed comments about Jews on a flight from Tel Aviv to Manchester in June 2017 were due to his having smoked cannabis before the trip during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, The Daily Mail reported on Monday.
The incident occurred over a year ago, when Shamraize Bashir, 34, from Bradford, was flying back from Israel to the United Kingdom with a group of friends. Standing at the back of the plane he said loudly, “You know the really fat Jewish women yeah? Their job is to let their husbands f*** them and make babies for them,” the Mail said.
When he was asked by other passengers to rein in his language, he replied, “I’m not f***ing swearing — you can’t tell me what to do, even my own mum doesn’t tell me what to do,” the paper reported.
The prosecutor said witnesses described the conversation about Jews as lasting several minutes and noted there were many Jewish passengers on the easyJet flight.
Bashir was arrested when the June 17, 2017, flight landed in Manchester.
At his trial this week, he told the court, “It was out of character, I do believe that this is down to smoking cannabis and that a course would help with that.”
He apologized to the court and to those he offended but protested the allegations of racism.
His defense lawyer said Bashir had spent an hour of the trip engaged in “friendly banter” with a Jewish woman, discussing the different streams of Judaism, and then went to tell his friends at the back of the plane about the conversation.
“He had been to Tel Aviv and soaked up the culture and had also sat and spoke to a Jewish lady for an hour — how could he be a racist?” his lawyer told the court according to the report.
“No one on the flight was put in any danger and there were no arguments as such, there was no escalation and nothing further happened,” his lawyer said.
The judge stressed the seriousness of the charges.
“Such behavior anywhere is inappropriate, such behavior on a plane is particularly inappropriate. You may wish to play this down but we think this is a very serious matter,” the Mail reported.
He was sentenced to 100 hours of community service and ordered to attend an anti-drug course.
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