A Sri Lankan man accused of threatening to blow up an international passenger jet flying out of Melbourne holds fears for his safety in custody, a court has heard.
Manodh Marks, 25, refused to appear in Melbourne Magistrates Court on Thursday over a mid-air drama that forced Malaysia Airlines to abort its overnight flight 128 bound for Kuala Lumpur.
The magistrate excused Marks from the hearing, where there was no application for bail, while his lawyer conveyed fears for his safety.
"He does have concerns for his safety in custody," defence lawyer Tess Dunsford told the magistrate.
She cited Marks' age and appearance as reasons for his vulnerability in prison, and said he suffered from a psychiatric illness,
Marks, who has been living at Dandenong on a student visa, is charged with endangering the safety of an aircraft and making false threats, both of which are federal offences.
Ms Dunsford said Marks had recently been a patient at Monash Health, a hospital in southeast Melbourne.
"I believe he does suffer from a psychiatric illness," the lawyer said.
The court heard CCTV footage will be used as evidence in the case.
Marks was remanded in custody and is expected to return to court for a committal mention on August 24.