by Reggie Noble on October 18, 2012

A Ukrainian man, hung over from a 50-day drinking binge, said he believed the wing of the airplane was on fire when he disrupted a Salt Lake City-bound Delta Air Lines flight and had to be wrestled to the floor by passengers, authorities allege in a criminal complaint.

Anatoliy N. Baranovich, 46, made his initial appearance in federal court Wednesday on complaints of damaging and disabling an aircraft and interfering with a flight crew. Federal authorities said Baranovich woke up during the plane’s descent, started yelling in Russian and tried to open the rear exit door, damaging the plane’s fuselage, before being restrained by passengers.

What would drive a man to go on an almost-two-month bender?

According to the criminal complaint filed Tuesday in U.S. District Court, Baranovich had been visiting family in the Ukraine for several weeks in an attempt to begin construction on a house. Unsuccessful in his efforts, Baranovich instead got drunk for the entire 50 days and “never sobered up.”

Yeah, that will do it.

Seems like a can’t-miss defense.

[New York Daily News]


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