Man who died on Aer Lingus flight was refused entry to Ireland in July

NewsBy Shuki Byrne
Deceased: John Kennedy Santos Gurjao
Deceased: John Kennedy Santos Gurjao

A Brazilian man who died a "violent death" on an Aer Lingus flight was refused entry into Ireland in the summer, according to reports.

The Irish Times is reporting the 24-year-old student was stopped at Dublin Airport in July and refused entry into the country. 

Mr John Kennedy Santos Gurjao was stopped by immigration police as he didn't have enough money to support himself in the country. 

According to the report, however, he returned to Ireland to pursue an English language course in a college in Dublin. He stayed for a time before returning to Brazil. 

Gurjao was returning to Ireland to attend another course on Sunday before his Visa expired when he was taken ill on the Dublin-bound flight. 

Yesterday, the young man's aunt says her nephew's family didn’t know he had left the country at all. 

Lourdes Gurjão told the he had told his family that he was at home in Macapa, northern Brazil, where he had lived for the past year.

"I received a call from the consulate asking us if we knew what happened. But in fact we didn’t know he was out of the country, we didn’t know where he went.” she said.

He had eight brothers and his parents had passed away early in his life, according to

Investigators received the results of a post-mortem examination yesterday which confirmed the 24-year-old had ingested a large amount of a substance believed to be cocaine. 

A post-mortem by Assistant State Pathologist Dr Margaret Bolster confirmed he had swallowed around 0.8kg of the drug. 

The drugs were wrapped in approximately 80 small pellets, and investigators believe just one of the wraps burst while he aboard the Lisbon-Dublin flight. 

Mr Santos Gurjao became erratic on the flight and took ill before passing out after a short time. He never regained consciousness, authorities said. 

A number of medical personnel aboard the flight attended to the man and performed CPR until the plane made an emergency landing in Cork. However, frantic attempts to resuscitate him proved fruitless. 

Gardai are now investigating the circumstances surrounding the man's movements before he boarded the Aer Lingus plane in Portugal. 

A 44-year-old woman arrested on the same flight has been released without charge after a powdery white substance discovered in her luggage was found to be baking soda.