A BRITISH Airways pilot has been sacked after telling a steward he had snorted cocaine before attempting to fly back to the UK on a jet.
Here’s everything we know about former BA pilot Mike Beaton and why he was sacked.
Who is Mike Beaton?
Mike Beaton is a former British Airways pilot from Devon.
Beaton, who is a father of one, also runs a retreat with his wife.
What did Mike Beaton do?
On September 26, 2023, it was reported that British Airways first officer Mike Beaton snorted coke from a woman’s bare breasts before attempting to fly a packed jet back to the UK.
The information came to light after Beaton flew to Johannesburg.
He had a break there before he was supposed to take over as co-pilot on a return flight to London.
Beaton discussed his night off with a colleague and close friend via text message, telling her that he had met two local boys, a Welsh holidaymaker and a “young Spanish bird”, at a nightclub in the city.
The pilot boasted, “We all (stagger) walk back to the hotel bar for ‘one last drink before bed.’
“Welsh and one of these guys get on really well, but she told him I was her boyfriend.
“A few drinks at the bar, a bit of snogging, and then somehow we’re all on our way to this guy’s apartment.”
“Welsh decided I should actually be her boyfriend – Spanish met up with one of the two local guys and got her tits sucked on her sofa.”
The ex-pilot continued: “I lost my shirt somewhere and one of the local boys pulls out a plate with a few lines of coke on it.”
“So there’s a debate about whose breast is best to reject.”
He added: “This is the story of how I snorted cocaine off a girl’s t**s in Johannesburg.”
Beaton then admitted that the evening had taken its toll, admitting: “I spent the night at Welsh’s, gave her shit for ages (I guess the coke played a part) and then I was so shitty that I couldn’t was able to lift my head once.” until gone 2.”
The former first officer was about to fly from South Africa to London last month when a concerned stewardess raised the alarm.
This led to shocked bosses canceling the 12-hour flight.
The cancellation is believed to have cost BA an estimated £100,000.
Why was Mike Beaton fired?
After the horrified pal and colleague reported him to superiors, Beaton was suspended before being flown home as a passenger the next day.
He was then subjected to a drugs test at Heathrow which came back positive, leading to Beaton’s dismissal.
A spokesman for the airline told The Sun: “Safety is always our top priority.”
“The matter has been referred to the CAA and this individual no longer works for us.”
Beaton has now had his medical certificate revoked by the Civil Aviation Authority.
This means he is now banned from the flight deck.
A CAA spokesman told The Sun: “An airline must inform us immediately if a British pilot has abused alcohol or drugs while boarding or on board an aircraft.”
“In these cases, we would immediately suspend the pilot’s medical examination, meaning he cannot fly.”
“In most cases, the pilot is examined by a team of medical experts and, if he wishes to fly again, a comprehensive rehabilitation program is carried out.”
“Medical care would only resume if we were completely satisfied.”