BACK TO WORK Judge orders pilots to stop boycotting flights after airport skirmish

Posted on 05/10/2017 | About Fort Lauderdale, Florida

Hundreds of angry passengers besieged ticket counters and some started a near riot at Fort Lauderdale's airport earlier this week after Spirit Airlines cancelled nine flights. The Broward Sheriff's Office says about 500 people jammed Spirit's terminal at Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport late Monday night after the airline cancelled flights because there were no pilots. Another 36 flights were cancelled Tuesday.

Now, a federal judge has sided with the carrier and ordered its unionized pilots to stop boycotting flights as part of a labour 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 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.

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.

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.