Former Beauty Queen Vs. United Airlines

The viral video of a doctor being removed from a United Airlines flight hit too close to home for a former beauty queen turned newscaster.

“I am a former Miss Venezuela, Miss South America second runner-up and then Miss Universe. But I am also a journalist. I was a TV anchor for Telemundo, and I have my own morning shows in Venezuela.”

Because she’s a public figure, Carmen Maria Montel’s 2013 United Airlines flight from Houston to Colombia made headlines.

“Beauty queen gets in drunken brawl over a pillow,” the headlines screamed.

She says she can relate to Doctor David Dao, who was forcibly removed from his United Airline seat.

“So, for me, it came very close to home, and I know Dr. Dao feels about the whole situation because I will be forever traumatized.”

It was really even a lot scarier for you because, at the time when it ended, you were facing some serous federal charges.

“Yeah, as a result of what they did to me, I ended up facing a one-count charge of interfering with a flight attendant.”

During a three-day federal trial, jurors heard how a United Airlines flight attendant decided to have two other passengers forcibly remove the former beauty queen from her first-class seat to coach.

“It was proved by testimony that I didn’t do anything. It was proved by testimony that the flight attendant acted on his own. It was proved by testimony that the pilot did not order my arrest nor authorize the flight attendant to arrest me and that at no point I did anything to cause this trouble, that the trouble was caused by my ex.” 

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