Airport evacuation smoker acquitted

A 28-year-old woman has been acquitted of smoking in a disabled toilet at Glasgow Airport even though she admitted doing it.

The international departures area of the airport was evacuated after a fire alarm was triggered in February 2012.

Gillian Hutchison, from Dreghorn in Ayrshire, was said to have admitted she had smoked a cigarette in the toilet.

However, she was acquitted after prosecutors failed to establish signs prohibiting smoking were displayed.

Paisley Sheriff Court heard the international departures area was evacuated after a fire alarm was triggered, with hundreds of passengers, crew members and staff leaving through an emergency exit.

Airport staff found traces of cigarette ash in the toilet at Gate 34 and discovered the smoke alarm had been stuffed with toilet paper in a failed attempt to disarm it.

They also found a mobile phone and when police traced its owner, his girlfriend, Ms Hutchison, admitted it was her who had been smoking.

She showed them a pack with one cigarette missing.

But when she appeared at Paisley Sheriff Court, she denied smoking against regulations in the airport when signs were displayed warning passengers against doing so.

Her solicitor said there was no case to answer, stating that the prosecution had failed to establish that there had been any such signs on display at the time.

Sheriff David Pender agreed and acquitted Hutchison who left court smiling broadly.

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