A man and a woman were arrested for “criminal use of drones” in the Gatwick area. The flight cancellations affected hundreds of thousands of passengers last week.
Following the arrest of two suspects, Gatwick, London’s Gatwick airport, paralyzed for days by flying drones, is scheduled to return to normal operation. “Our runway is open and we are aiming for a full schedule on Saturday,” They said in the morning on the website of the airport.
The investigations into the targeted drone stunctions had led to the arrest of two suspects. Because of the flying drones at London’s Gatwick airport, about 1,000 flights have been canceled or diverted since Wednesday night, hundreds of thousands of passengers were affected – in the middle of the peak holiday season before Christmas. There were also delays and cancellations of flights to and from London Gatwick at the Vienna-Schwechat, Salzburg and Innsbruck airports. Gatwick is Europe’s seventh largest airport and number two in the UK after London Heathrow.
According to the police, “considerable forces were mobilized” to track down the drones and those responsible for the disturbances. However, despite a large-scale operation with helicopters, snipers and special equipment of the army, the disruptive maneuvers initially continued. Although flight operations were resumed on Friday morning after a 36-hour shutdown, another drone was discovered in the evening. Again the airfield was closed – this time for just over an hour. After that, there were some takeoffs and landings, but not really normal flight operations.
The authorities’ investigation into “criminal use of drones” eventually led to two arrests on Friday night shortly after 10:00 pm local time (11:00 pm CET), police said in Sussex County. It was a man and a woman who had been “in the Gatwick area,” the British news agency Press Association reported, citing the police. At first, there was no further information about the course of the mission.
“All investigation will be pursued until we are sure that we have defused further threats to the safety of passengers,” it said in the police release. Efforts are still made to locate any other drones above the airport and make harmless. Eyewitnesses and other whistleblowers can contact the police directly.