Two arrests made in drone sightings that shut down London airport

Passengers wait at London's Gatwick Airport, which closed on Wednesday after drone sightings at the airport. After it reopened, another drone sighting forced its closure again on Friday. Photo by Facundo Arrizabalaga/EPA

Dec. 22 (UPI) — Two people have been arrested as police investigate drone sightings that temporarily shut down London’s Gatwick Airport this week.

Flights at Gatwick, Britain’s second-largest airport, were suspended for more than 30 hours starting Wednesday after two drones were discovered that day, and more than 50 drones were detected in the 24 hours following the first appearance, according to Detective Chief Superintendent Jason Tingley of Sussex Police.

Police arrested a 47-year-old man and a 54-year-old woman on suspicion of the “criminal use of drones,” Friday night in Crawley, a major town close to the airport.

“As part of our ongoing investigations into the criminal use of drones which has severely disrupted flights in and out of Gatwick Airport, Sussex Police made two arrests,” Superintendent James Collis said in a statement Saturday. “Our investigations are still on-going, and our activities at the airport continue to build resilience to detect and mitigate further incursions from drones, by deploying a range of tactics.”

With more than 124,000 passengers on 757 flights Saturday, according to an airport spokesman, Gatwick is expected to run a full schedule even with some delays and cancellations.


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