Uplink ALPA - The Voice of Aviation

The New Zealand Air Line Pilots' Association Newsletter. As of April 2020 Uplink ALPA is a 6-monthly publication.

Hijacker remains in compulsory care

Wellington Airport has a trespass notice in place for Asha Abdille, New Zealand’s only convicted plane hijacker.

The woman who attacked pilots with a knife and injured a passenger on an Air New Zealand flight from Blenheim to Christchurch in February 2008 was sentenced to nine years in prison. Her sentence expires this month.

She is currently held in a psychiatric unit in the Wellington region and is under a compulsory treatment order since her sentence expired.

“Any threat to airline security has to be taken very seriously, but our Association is assured by reports that Ms Abdille is to be under the compulsory care of the mental health system,” NZALPA President Tim Robinson said.

"I am confident, given the risks to airline security that Ms Abdille still appears to represent, that the health and security authorities will be cooperating closely to ensure every measure is taken to protect airlines, their staff and the travelling public.

“We will, of course, maintain a close watch on this situation ourselves and work directly with the authorities as appropriate."

Wellington Airport is the country’s first airport to instate the trespass notice for Abdille, with others expected to follow.

* Correct at the time of writing.

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