A South Korean court has ruled that Cho Hyun-ah, also known as Heather Cho, a former executive at the national airline Korean Air, is guilty of breaking the air aviation law. She has been sentenced to one year in prison for the same.
In the trial for what is popularly known as the "nut rage" case, Cho has been charged with obstructing aviation safety, assault and interfering in an investigation, reports BBC. Before the trial, it was said that if found guilty of diverting the aircraft with no good reason, she would be facing a maximum of 10 years in jail.
The case sparked huge outrage in South Korea because Cho, a former vice president of Korean Air, had allegedly forced a plane to turn back to the gate and offload a steward; all because she was not pleased by the way the latter was serving nuts. Cho had demanded that the flight crew chief be expelled from the flight, after a stewardess at the first class, served her macadamia nuts in a bag and not on a dish, reports Reuters.
The "nut rage" incident occurred on 5 December in a flight from New York to Seoul, according to BBC.
Cho, the daughter of Korean Air chief executive Cho Yang-ho, had publicly apologised for the incident and resigned from all her posts at the airline in December. She had been detained since 30 December, and on Monday, pleaded "not guilty" when charged with obstructing aviation safety.
The story is pitted as an example of how the South Korea's family-run conglomerates, or "chaebols" dominate the country's business landscape.