Ryanair pays the €525,000 to the French authorities for the impounded aircraft
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The Financial Times reports that the Irish company, which has faced months of bad publicity over flight disruptions and strikes, made the payment.

Earlier this week, 150 passengers were taken off a London-bound plane by the French Civil Aviation Authority.

France said the jet was seized as a “last resort” in a dispute over the repayment of regional funding for flights at the Angoulême airport that were later deemed illegal by the EU.  The Associated Press cited Eric Heraud, spokesman for the French Civil Aviation Authority, saying the plane would be released after Ryanair paid back the funds.

The ruling by the European Commission was one of seven findings of illegal state aid between 2014 and 2016 against Ryanair’s arrangements at regional airports that included Nîmes, Altenburg, Zweibrücken, Cagliari and Klagenfurt.

The airline appealed in the European courts after it was ordered to repay some €23.7m of alleged aid for conferring an unfair economic advantage to the company. The French authority said: “It is unfortunate that the state had to take such action, which led to the inevitable inconvenience of the 149 passengers on board the immobilised plane.”

It added: “Those passengers were able to eventually reach their destination later that evening on another Ryanair plane, but with a five-hour delay.”

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