Flight attendant Fernando Miguel Andrade Viseu, 34, swiped the £499 Nikon camera after primary school teacher Aaron Galloway left it behind as he landed in Prague on a half-term city break.
When a despondent Aaron returned home to Brighton three days later he went on Ebay in search of a replacement – and was astonished to see his camera for sale with just 33 minutes left of the auction. He messaged Viseu, who confessed to the theft and admitted he was a Ryanair flight attendant.
Police subsequently raided Viseu’s home near Stansted, and he was charged with stealing the camera from Aaron, plus a Kindle from an unknown owner. He admitted the offences when he appeared before Chelmsford magistrates, who ordered him to do 100 hours’ unpaid community work. He was also ordered to attend a drug rehabilitation programme and pay £145 costs.
“When I saw it on Ebay I couldn’t believe it,” said Aaron, quoted in the Mirror. “I was angry with Ryanair to be honest. How can they not notice someone just taking things off the seats? He had deleted everything from the camera – photos of Christmas, of a family member who had passed away and my graduation – all wiped. I’d been looking forward to taking lots of photos on my holiday and that was just ruined.”
Ryanair have confirmed that Viseu no longer works for the budget airline. Meanwhile, best check you have all your personal belongings and effects before leaving the aircraft, folks…