Man with mental disorder who chanted Allah Hu Akbar on a plane because he was ‘scared’ is jailed for 10 weeks

Shehraz Sarwar, 38, has been jailed after chanting Allah hu Akbar on a plane because he was scared during the flight.

Passengers on the plane were ‘left in tears’ after becoming frightened by his shouting during a turbulence-hit landing on February 1 this year.

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Prosecutor Alex Warren said Mr Sarwar caused trouble from the beginning of the flight by refusing to put his seat belt on during take-off.

He said: ‘There was terrible turbulence during the flight and some passengers were very frightened.’

‘The defendant started chanting Allahu Akbar over and over again and very loudly. People were getting very distressed with his behaviour.’

‘When the plane finally landed, he shouted ‘boom.’

‘It left some passengers in tears while one man angrily confronted the defendant before being told to sit down by cabin staff.’

Mr Balbir Singh, defending Mr Sarwar said that Sarwar had been upset after attending the funeral of his grandmother in Pakistan.

He said ‘There was considerable turbulence. One of the cabin crew, with 14 years experience, said it was the worse landing she had ever experienced’ which frightened Mr Sarwar and caused him to chant ‘Allah Hu Akbar.’

‘Mr Sarwar was scared during the flight. He prayed, chanting Allahu Akbar, which translates as God is Great. When the plane landed he did shout out ‘boom.’

‘It was a very foolish thing to do and he can’t really explain why he said it. It was the height of foolishness.’

‘He is very sorry for his actions and realises what distress this caused to other passengers.’

Sentencing Sarwar, Judge Francis Laird QC said: ‘Set in the context of the current political situation, chanting Allahu Akbar over and over again while on a plane had a frightening affect on some of the passengers and reduced some to tears.

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