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British Airways sued over allegations pilot sexually abused girls in East Africa on layovers

A London law firm is initiating legal proceedings against British Airways over allegations that one of its pilots sexually abused 16 girls in Kenya, Uganda and Tanzania during layovers.

Leigh Day lawyer Nichola Marshall said Wednesday that pilot Simon Wood was able to abuse the girls because of his employment with the airline and the company's community outreach work.

British Airways said it was shocked and horrified by the allegations, which the company said appeared to be related to activities "entirely outside the scope of his employment with British Airways." The airline extended its sympathies to the victims.

Wood was struck by a train and died two weeks before he was to appear in court last August. He had faced charges of indecent assault and making and possessing child pornography.