A WOMAN described as being in a "drunken state" caused a holiday flight from Newcastle to Turkey to be diverted.

The woman, alleged to have become abusive and disruptive, was restrained in her seat while the Thomas Cook flight diverted to Sofia in Bulgaria where the woman was removed from the aircraft by local police.

One passenger alleged that she tried to smash several of the plane's windows and became aggressive towards crew members.

Thomas Cook today confirmed that the jet - enroute to Dalaman - on Sunday evening changed its course due to a “disruptive” passenger.

A spokesman for the holiday firm said: “Due to an extremely disruptive passenger, the pilot made the decision to divert to Sofia.

“It is very rare that this happens, however it was deemed by the crew to be the necessary thing to do at the time.

“The plane was met by Bulgarian police and the woman, along with her partner who was not involved in the disruption, were escorted from the plane.”

One person aboard the flight told The Northern Echo: "Eventually an off duty police officer gave assistance to strap the passenger to her seat with handcuffs until we landed in Sofia where police removed her from the aircraft."

One said: “Had to make an emergency landing in Bulgaria as some lass went mental and started kicking doors and windows on the flight last night.”

It is understood that the flight was delayed by an hour and a half as a result of the diversion.