Samir Jamaluddin, a senior first officer who flew Boeing 747 jets, was arrested by counter terror police in 2007 before he was dropped by the airline three years later. He launched a claim for racial discrimination and unfair dismissal but this was rejected by an employment tribunal which found in favour of BA.
Officers dropped the case against him in February 2008 owing to insufficient evidence. Mr Jamaluddin initially remained with BA but the airline suspended his flight crew pass and he was sacked in October 2010, following a security review of his position.
The British pilot, born to Indian parents, told a hearing in Havant, Hampshire, that he believed he was targeted because he was Asian and a Muslim.
While police did not pursue the criminal case against him, BA conducted its own internal investigation, concluding there was a significant security risk if Mr Jamaluddin continued in his role. He was offered the opportunity to find a new position within the company which did not require him to have an airside pass. This proved unsuccessful and his employment was terminated.
It (the Tribunal) said: "The Tribunal had no doubt that for whatever reason, the claimant found himself in an invidious position; as did the respondents. There was no evidence of wrongdoing or misconduct by the claimant, however, his employer had a very proper duty to pursue the matters which ultimately led to his dismissal.
"The withdrawal of the pass and his subsequent dismissal has had a catastrophic effect on the claimant's flying career, certainly within the UK. The tribunal after consideration of all of the facts, whilst being sympathetic to the claimant's plight, are satisfied that the respondents did not discriminate or act unlawfully."
In a statement the airline said: "The safety and security of our customers, aircraft and employees is always our number one priority and we will never compromise this area of our business. Following information from the police, we carried out a thorough investigation and risk analysis and concluded that Mr Jamaluddin was not suitable to work as a co-pilot. . . "