Nov. 1 (UPI) -- A senior Mongolian official and his assistant who groped South Korean female flight attendants during a flight from Ulaanbaatar to Incheon were detained then let go by South Korean airport police.
Dorj Odbayar, the chairman of Mongolia's constitutional court, and a colleague who was not identified, was charged with sexually harassing Korean Air flight attendants, KBS reported Friday.
Odbayar was reportedly under the influence of alcohol at the time of the incident. He may have inappropriately touched the buttocks of a flight attendant on duty, while his colleague, identified as a man in his 40s, felt up the shoulders of another member of airline staff, according to South Korean news service Newsis.
The incident took place on flight KE868, which departed Ulaanbaatar at 8 p.m. on Thursday. Arrests were made inside the airline, and the defendants were turned over to Incheon airport police after landing.
After questioning Odbayar and his companion, airport police released the two men, citing diplomatic immunity.
The release of the Mongolian nationals was unwarranted, South Korea's foreign ministry said.
Odbayar had informed Incheon airport police he was immune from prosecution, while showing them his diplomatic passport, according to South Korean press reports.
Seoul's foreign ministry said Odbayar's statement may have been incorrect and that immunity rights apply only to heads of state and foreign ministers.
Odbayar was released and allowed to travel to a Southeast Asian destination. The Mongolian official reportedly said he would cooperate with investigators upon his return, according to reports.
Incheon police said they plan to investigate Odbayar at a later date, Newsis reported.