BlackBerry Execs Get Smashed, Ground Flight
Men arrested for behavior; each owes airline $36K
By Matt Cantor,  Newser User
Posted Dec 2, 2011 9:55 AM CST
BlackBerry bosses aren't helping the company out.   (AP Photo/dapd, Oliver Lang, File)

(Newser) – 'Tis the season of headaches for BlackBerry: Two Research in Motion executives got incredibly drunk on a flight from Toronto to Beijing on Monday night, prompting pilots to turn the plane, which was north of Alaska, around. They landed in Vancouver, where the men were arrested, Gawker reports. George Campbell, 45, and Paul Alexander Wilson, 38, “simply weren't listening to any direction that the flight crew was giving them,” a Canadian official tells the Toronto Star.

The two men got suspended sentences and a year’s probation; each has to pay Air Canada $35,878 and can't fly the airline during that probation period. On top of that, they’ve both been suspended from their jobs. The other 312 passengers had it pretty rough, too, notes the Star. Because the direct flight was a 13-hour one, the interruption meant the total time to get to Beijing exceeded flight crew safety regulations—so a new crew had to be called in, during which time the travelers were put up in a hotel. They ultimately arrived 18 hours late.