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Teenage tycoon hopes latest venture of setting up charter airline will take off

By This is Lincolnshire  |  Posted: September 06, 2010

Joseph Hayat, 17, of Sleaford, has set up his own charter airline.

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A TEENAGE tycoon from Sleaford is hoping his latest venture is set to take off after setting up his own charter airline.

But along the way young Joseph Hayat, 17, has discovered just how hard it is to break into the cutthroat world of aviation and had to endure a "friendly visit" by HM Revenue and Customs, the UK Border Agency and Special Branch.

Yet the wannabe RAF pilot – who was afraid of flying when he was younger – has come through it all the more determined to succeed and with global interest in the new firm, he is hoping the near £100,000 worth of enquiries could soon translate into his first order.

"It's been more difficult than I ever imagined," said former IT company boss.

"For me, starting out has been a massive struggle – I've been compared to fantasists, liars, cheats and weirdos.

"I thought everything was in place back in July, but only two days before the launch I had to cancel.

"I faced questioning from Special Branch and customs, who assumed I was flying to the Channel Islands.

"They had concerns over terrorism and contraband and God knows what.

"But I've never been arrested or had anything to do with drugs and I'm not religious or linked to extreme groups – I'm an air cadet."

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    Colin Mair, Coningsby  |  September 06 2010, 9:47AM

    I wish you the best of luck Joseph! As Mark Twain said,"A person with a new idea is a crank until the idea succeeds", so don't be at all surprised by the negative insults you have heard. I only hope they have been balanced by positive support.