Daily Mail reports that a 36-year-old Hungarian man named Tamás Farkas caressed a woman’s leg for up to 20 minutes during a flight from Budapest to Manchester on 25 May 2017. He defended himself by saying that he was asleep during the flight and even if he did touch her, it was accidental and involuntary. Farkas was found guilty of sexual assault at Manchester Magistrates’ Court.
The victim was seated in the middle of the row between two men. The plane was cruising at 30,000ft when the young woman in her 20’s noticed that the man on her left pressed his leg against hers and ran his hand up her thigh. The woman told Daily Mail that she was doing everything to distract herself such as reading and listening to music, but she could not focus.
“I could feel his fingers on me. He was caressing my leg. I was too scared to say anything to him because I didn’t know how he would react and I wanted to draw as little attention as possible . . . it was particularly his knee and thigh that was rubbing against my knee and thigh. It moved a few inches up and down. This went in for almost 20 minutes.”
She said that it might not have been obvious to the other passengers on the plane, but she could definitely feel it even over her jeans. Eventually, she asked Farkas, who was pretending to be asleep, to let her out because she has to go to the toilet. She went to the back of the plane and told the crew what happened in tears, and asked to be re-seated. The crew let her switch her seat, and the police were alerted.
Farkas denied the allegations and said that he was asleep during the flight, kept his legs together and kept his arms on his lap. He said he would never touch a woman like that during a flight.
Judge Sam Goozee said that Farkas’s account was not believable and his actions and behaviour were deliberate and intentional. There was a sexual element with the touching as he caressed the woman’s thigh for a substantial period while she did not consent to this. Eventually, Farkas was charged with sexual assault, and he will be sentenced later.