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Federal Judge Orders Spirit Airlines Pilots To Stop Boycotting Flights

May 10, 2017
Originally published on May 10, 2017 7:32 am

Less than a day after skirmishes broke out in Spirit Airlines' Fort Lauderdale terminal because of canceled flights, a federal judge has sided with the carrier and ordered its unionized pilots to stop boycotting flights as part of a labor action.

District Judge William P. Dimitrouleas issued the order Tuesday, saying Spirit likely would win its lawsuit charging that the Airline Pilots Association was engaged in work slowdowns that violated federal law. The union has denied the accusation.

Three New York residents were arrested Monday night after scuffles broke out at Spirit's terminal at Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport. Sheriff's reports released say about 500 people were in the terminal when 22-year-old Desmond Waul of Selden and 24-year-old Janice Waul and 22 year-old Davante Garrett, both of Brentwood, were seen by deputies threatening the airline's front counter employees.

They are charged with inciting a riot, disorderly conduct, resisting arrest and trespassing. They were being held Tuesday at the Broward jail in lieu of $10,000 bond each. Records do not show if they have attorneys.

Deputies say their actions caused the crowd to become increasingly aggressive to the point of near violence and that they wouldn't leave when ordered.

Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport was the scene of a January mass shooting that killed five people and wounded six.

CBS News reports nine flights were canceled.

The pilots association tells CBS that Spirit pilots aren't engaged in any job action with Spirit and that the airline's operations "have experienced significant problems over the past several days."

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