London, July 4 A 50-year-old Irish human rights lawyer who hurled expletive-ridden racist taunts at Air India cabin crew after being refused alcohol on a Mumbai-London flight last year has apparently killed herself in England, media reports said.
Simone Burns was sentenced to six months in jail in April for her abusive tirade and spitting at the flight attendants during the flight on November 11.
The Irish woman was released from Bronzefield women’s prison on licence on May 20 and was found dead at the foot of cliffs in East Sussex 13 days later — on June 1, the UK media reported.
Viral footage of the racist rant showed Burns demanding that she be served a fourth bottle of wine on her business class flight to London.
It captured her shouting, “I’m a f***ing international lawyer” after she was denied more booze on the flight.
She screamed: “I have done so much for you fing Indians and fing Pakistanis, you should be grateful to me.”
Burns also called the staff “Indian money-grabbing c**ts” and smoked a cigarette in the toilets during the outburst.
She was given a verbal warning by cabin crew followed by a written warning from the captain, but her behaviour continued.
She shouted: ‘F**k Air India is useless, I will say what I want.’ The woman also spat in the face of one of the cabin crew and grabbed their arm, abusing other crew members and passengers.
A spokesman for Sussex Police was quoted as saying by the UK media that “the body of a woman found at Beachy Head on June 1 has been identified as 50-year-old Simone Burns from Hove”.
“The death is not being treated as suspicious and the next of kin have been informed. The matter has been passed to the coroner’s officer,” the official said.
Burns, who was also known as Simone O’Broin, was arrested in London before being taken to court.
Judge Nicholas Wood told her at Isleworth Crown Court: “Those who come drunk on an aircraft and behave in such a way must expect a custodial sentence. The experience of a drunk and irrational person in the confines of an aircraft is frightening.”
Calling Burns “abusive, contemptuous and confrontational”, the judge sentenced her to six months in prison for being drunk on aircraft and ordered her to pay 300 pounds as compensation.