Korean Air heiress wants ‘nut rage’ trial moved from US to S. Korea

July 14, 2015

Former Korean Air Executive Vice President Heather Cho. (Newsis)

By Jhoo Dong-chan

Former Korean Air Executive Vice President Heather Cho has asked a New York court to dismiss a suit filed against her by a flight attendant so that she can stand trial in Korea instead.

According to sources, Monday, Cho recently submitted a motion to dismiss the “nut rage” case in the Supreme Court of the State of New York County of Queens, which was dealing with the civil suit filed by the airline company’s junior flight attendant Kim Do-hee.

Kim filed a compensation suit to the court against Cho and Korean Air on March 9, claiming that she suffered from verbal and physical abuse from Cho and the incident damaged her career and reputation.

In the “nut rage” incident in December, Cho ordered a plane bound for Seoul to return to the gate from a taxiing area at JFK International Airport in New York and forced chief flight attendant Park Chang-jin off the plane because she was outraged when Kim served her macadamia nuts in a bag instead of on a plate.

Cho claimed that a trial in the U.S. is unnecessary because the case was already investigated in Korea and all related documents were written in Korean. She said it is proper to have the trial in Korea because Korean laws do not limit compensation.

Cho’s side also said that for a trial in the U.S., both sides have to translate 8,000 pages of documents about the investigation and criminal suit here into English.

The former executive also said that Kim filed the suit with the U.S. court to get more compensation than she would receive with a Korean court.

Cho’s lawyer asked Kim’s lawyer to submit an answer in writing to Cho’s request about the motion to the New York court by July 29. The court will then decide whether to dismiss the case.

Another victim of the incident, Park, is also working to file a compensation suit against Cho in the U.S. According to the sources, Park has contacted lawyers in New York and the compensation could reach 50 billion won ($44 million).

One Comment

  1. Kris

    July 24, 2015 at 7:08 AM

    The labor abuse happened in New York. They have jurisdiction. Still trying to figure out how she avoided a U.S. Court for her first trial? Was it to get less consequences in Korea? She should have been escorted off the plane by Homeland Security. Is she at least on a no fly list?