Malaysia Airlines says it is “shocked” about new allegations raised against the first officer of the still-missing flight 370.
The Oneworld Alliance carrier’s statement comes hours after photos and video showed a Malaysia pilot identified as first officer Fariq Ab Hamid entertaining tourists inside the cockpit of previous flights.
Hamid was serving as the first officer on the Boeing 777-200 that disappeared off the coast of Malaysia while en route to Beijing early on 8 March.
Malaysia says it takes the allegations against Hamid “very seriously”, although it has not yet confirmed whether they are true.
“As you are aware, we are in the midst of a crisis, and we do not want our attention to be diverted,” the carrier says in a statement.
Hamid, 27, had accumulated 2,800 flight hours with Malaysia since 2007.
The allegation was made on an Australian tabloid TV programme called A Current Affair.
Australian Jonti Roos says she and her friend were invited into the cockpit by Hamid and allowed to stay for the entirety of 1h-long flight in December 2011 from Phuket, Thailand to Kuala Lumpur.
Roos also claims that Hamid and another pilot who has not been identified smoked in the cockpit during the flight.