I was arrested at 17. Can I still become an RAF Pilot? Watch
For a few years now I've been interested in joining the RAF. I am 21 years old and I meet all the requirements to be eligible to apply to become an RAF Pilot.
My only worry is that at the age of 17 I was arrested on the way to a festival for possession of Cannabis, and due to being underage, was taken to a police station and processed.
I hadn't tried the drug before that (nor since), but thought a trip to a festival would be a good time, as a lot of young people do. I had no idea what I wanted to do as an occupation at that point either. Unfortunately I was searched by a sniffer dog on my way into a coach station and immediately owned up to having possession of it.
Whilst being processed in the police station, the police officers were comforting and told me that once I turned 18 my record would be wiped, and that I would never have to declare that the incident occurred.
However I would assume that the RAF background checks are thorough and that they would find out.
Therefore I am asking;
1) Am I still eligible to apply?
2) Should I admit if asked that I arrested at 17?
3) Would admitting it have an effect on my selection?
4) Should I say nothing and hope they never find out?
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You need to ask yourself - namely so you can convince the recruiters - why they should employ you over someone with a perfect record, been in Air Cadets all their life, done an Aerospace degree etc.
Don't take this as gospel though, I'm no legal expert!