Lion Air attendant reportedly slaps passenger in altercation over seats

A Lion Air passenger identified as Dean Ricko Pakpahan has been allegedly slapped by an attendant to the Soekarno-Hatta Airport police in Tangerang, Banten.

The incident occurred on Sunday afternoon when Ricko and his brother flew with the carrier from Juanda Airport in Surabaya, East Java to Soekarno-Hatta.

The incident began when Ricko and his brother were transferred to another flight after their flight was delayed for a second time. Their seats, based on the numbers shown on their tickets, had been taken by other passengers.

"The attendant then ordered us to look for empty seats. But, she tried to leave without providing any certainty about the seats. My brother then tried to keep her from leaving by holding her hand," Ricko said.

A senior attendant then apologised for the inconvenience. However, she accused his brother of making physical contact with the attendant, Ricko added.

When they arrived at Soekarno-Hatta Airport, Ricko reported the incident to the pilot, which resulted in his brother and the attendant becoming involved in another confrontation.

Ricko then decided to film the incident with his smartphone. "I felt that I was slapped in the face twice by the attendant as she tried to take my phone," Ricko said.

Lion Air Group spokesman Ramaditya Handoko confirmed the incident, saying that his side had suspended the attendant until the case was resolved.