Belfast Telegraph

Pilot who flew after three-day drinking binge is jailed

By Ben Kendall

A pilot who flew an executive jet from Spain while hungover after a three-day drinking binge has been jailed.

Ian Jennings (47), from Gosport, Hampshire, was arrested at Norwich Airport after landing a commercial chartered plane carrying millionaire scrap metal mogul Andre Serruys along with a woman and three teenage girls.

Somebody on board the flight became suspicious that he had been drinking and contacted the police. When police breath tested Jennings on October 30, he smelled strongly of alcohol and seemed nervous, Norwich Crown Court heard.

He was found to be three times the legal limit for a pilot. His barrister accepted Jennings may have fallen foul of "topping up" after several days of heavy drinking to celebrate his engagement.

Sentencing him to nine months in prison, Judge Holt said: "It is my duty to send the clear message that any pilot who commits this kind of offence must expect an immediate custodial sentence."

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