Blue singer Lee Ryan ‘physically assaulted’ on flight to Turkey after ‘putting feet on seat’
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The boyband Blue has said one of its members, Lee Ryan, was “physically assaulted” by a man while on a flight to Turkey. In a statement released on Twitter, the band said the 39-year-old was assaulted by a fellow passenger on the Turkish Airlines flight from Georgia to Istanbul on Saturday (July 8).
According to them, Ryan was then pushed down a flight of stairs by the same passenger once the plane had landed, resulting in his leg being injured. The statement said both Ryan and “the rest of the band defended him from the attack”.
The statement said the incident occurred after Ryan had “put his feet on the seat”, which they said “was culturally insensitive”. It continued: “Lee has apologised for any unknowing offence caused.”
They said both Ryan and the passenger were spoken to by the police in Turkey. They said: “Lee voluntarily gave a victim statement supported by the band. Lee was not at any point arrested, detained or charged with any offence and after giving his statement, was free to continue his journey.”
The latest incident follows Ryan’s conviction in January for being drunk on a flight and racially aggravated common assault after hitting and abusing a black cabin crew member.
He also admitted to biting a police officer when being arrested while drunk. The musician has subsequently filed an appeal, alleging he acted in self-defence. He is awaiting sentencing.
Blue broke through into the music scene in 2001. Their debut single, ‘All Rise’, peaked at number four in the UK singles chart and at number one in New Zealand.