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Ryanair Expands Defamation Suit to Former Pilot Over Safety Show

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Aug. 22 (Bloomberg) -- Ryanair Holdings Plc filed a defamation lawsuit in Dublin against a former pilot who appeared on a U.K. television documentary that questioned the carrier’s stance on safety.

The suit against John Goss is being brought over comments made on the broadcast, which Ryanair said contradicted his written statements that he had no safety concerns, Ryanair said in a statement today on its website. The airline is seeking “total vindication,” Paul Tweed, senior partner at law firm Johnsons Solicitors, said in a statement.

Europe’s largest discount carrier dismissed Goss on Aug. 14, days after he appeared in the Channel 4 “Dispatches” program that aired the safety concerns. The report relied on a survey conducted by the Ryanair Pilots Group, which claims to represent more than half of the carrier’s air crew.

Ryanair last week also sued Channel 4/Blakeway Productions, Associated Newspapers, which publishes the Daily Mail, and Mirror Group, whose titles include the Daily Mirror, as well as the Belfast Telegraph in Northern Ireland.

The Ryanair Pilot Group, of which Goss is a member, didn’t immediately respond to written request for comment. The group said last week after his dismissal that it supports Goss and that Ryanair had chosen to “deny the existence of any problems and to effectively shoot the messenger.”

To contact the reporter on this story: Robert Wall in London at rwall6@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Benedikt Kammel at bkammel@bloomberg.net

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