Family kicked off flight over birthday cake

A US family has been left dumbfounded after being kicked off a flight for attempting to bring a birthday cake onboard.

Footage of the incident, shared on Twitter by ABC reporter CeFaan Kim, shows the Burke family on the JetBlue plane from New York to Las Vegas - but instead of the excitement that normally accompanies a holiday, they were forced to wait on the runway because their cake was deemed a risk to security.

Cameron Burke had originally placed the cake in the overhead locker as a surprise for his wife Minta's birthday - but when it was spotted by a flight attendant, he was told to move it under a seat instead, ruining the surprise and foreshadowing a strange series of events that would see them kicked off their flight.

A second flight attendant arrived to confront the first, reiterating that the cake couldn't be in the overhead locker - and when Mr Burke approached to say everything was fine, she said the matter didn't concern him and warned him against being "non-compliant", he said.

Speaking to ABC News, Mr Burke said he asked the air hostess whether she'd been drinking as he was so confused by her behaviour - but that didn't deter her and after more discussion, JFK Airport police were brought on board the JetBlue plane to remove them, and Mr Burke began filming.

The footage shows Mr Burke's son, Cameron Jr., crying as a police officer takes his father's ID and informs them they will have to disembark from the flight. Another passenger can be heard defending them; Mr Burke says they were one of many who spoke out against JetBlue staff.

"The passengers were very understanding. They knew that this was a strange situation," he told ABC.

In a statement, the airline cast blame on Mr Burke for being the cause of his family's removal.

"[The customer] refused multiple requests from the crew to remove the items... became agitated, cursed and yelled at the crew, and made false accusations about a crewmember's fitness to fly," it said.

However Mr Burke denies that - and said he was offered a full refund immediately after being kicked off, which he has taken as a sign that Jet Blueknew they were in the wrong.