• Kyodo

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A Japan Airlines copilot has been arrested in Kanazawa, Ishikawa Prefecture, after he allegedly assaulted a police officer during a night out.

The airline said Soichi Tatsumi, 42, was seen hitting a 49-year-old JAL captain he had been drinking with Monday evening and then slapped a police officer who attempted to intervene.

He was arrested on the spot for allegedly obstructing an officer in the performance of duty.

The police quoted Tatsumi as saying he was drunk and therefore could not remember clearly what happened.

The pilot and copilot were supposed to fly Flight 182 from Komatsu Airport near Kanazawa to Tokyo’s Haneda airport on Tuesday morning. The flight was canceled, leading to rescheduled travel arrangements for 81 people.

JAL suspects both pilot and co-pilot breached internal rules about drinking before duty. Pilots are not allowed to consume alcohol up to 12 hours before a flight.

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