Prosecution seeks 3-year jail term for Korean Air heiress

February 2, 2015
Cho Hyun-ah, the eldest daughter of Korean Air Chairman Cho Yang-ho and former vice president of the airline company, appears at Aviation and Railway Accident Investigation Board in western Seoul on Dec. 12, 2014, to be questioned for ordering a crew member to leave a plane over an alleged breach of snack-serving protocol. (Yonhap)

Cho Hyun-ah, the eldest daughter of Korean Air Chairman Cho Yang-ho and former vice president of the airline company, appears at Aviation and Railway Accident Investigation Board in western Seoul on Dec. 12, 2014, to be questioned for ordering a crew member to leave a plane over an alleged breach of snack-serving protocol. (Yonhap)

SEOUL (Yonhap) — Prosecutors sought a three-year prison term Monday for a former vice president of South Korea’s top airline, Korean Air Lines Co., charged with obstructing aviation safety after she ordered a crew member to deplane over in-flight service in December.

Cho Hyun-ah, the eldest daughter of the airline’s chairman, ordered a senior crew member to deplane after being served macadamia nuts in an unopened pack instead of on a plate on Dec. 5. The Seoul-bound flight was subsequently returned to the gate at John F. Kennedy airport to deplane the purser.

Prosecutors charged her with violations of aviation safety regulations — changing flight plans and assault on a plane — and coercion and interference in the execution of duty.

Cho was additionally charged with interfering in the execution of a government official’s duty as she had allegedly exerted influence in the government investigation.

Cho resigned as a vice president of cabin service four days after a national uproar over her conduct.

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