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Former Etihad CEO under fire for violating UK quarantine rules

Aviation Updates Philippines – The former CEO of Etihad Airways has come under fire after being accused of lying about his travel history to avoid mandatory hotel quarantine upon arrival in the UK.

Photo by Adam Moreira on Wikimedia Commons

James Hogan, who served as the Abu Dhabi-based carrier's Chief Executive from 2006-2017, flew from Abu Dhabi in the UAE — one of the countries in the UK government's so-called "red list" — to Geneva, Switzerland on March 17th using his Australian passport before flying to the UK two days later.

Hogan, who is a British-Australian dual citizen, reportedly used his British passport to enter the UK to avoid being questioned about his visit to the UAE. Hogan also allegedly lied about his travel history on his passenger locator form.

Earlier this year, the UK government began requiring British nationals and residents returning from countries it considers "high risk" to quarantine for ten days at a government-approved hotel to curb the spread of COVID-19.

Sources claim that Hogan was reported to British embassy officials by a whistleblower in either the UAE or Switzerland after openly bragging about his plans to avoid quarantine.

Photo by the World Economic Forum

Hogan was stopped by Border Force officers upon arrival at London's Heathrow Airport on March 19th and was detained before being taken to quarantine. Hogan now faces a fine of at least £10,000 and may even be prosecuted for his violation.

UK authorities are also now investigating a similar trip Hogan had made from Abu Dhabi to London via Geneva in February.

Hogan, who was named "Aviation CEO of the Year" in 2008 and "Visionary of the Year" in 2010 by CEO Middle East magazine, is credited for transforming Etihad into a major player in the global airline industry. During his time as CEO, Hogan signed orders for hundreds of new aircraft, increasing the airline's fleet from 12 to 123 Boeing and Airbus planes. Hogan also oversaw the acquisition of minority stakes in numerous carriers including Air Berlin, Air Seychelles, Alitalia, Jet Airways, and Virgin Australia.

Hogan is currently the executive chairman of Knighthood Capital, a Geneva-based financing advisory firm which he founded after leaving Etihad in 2017.

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