Page last updated at 15:06 GMT, Thursday, 4 March 2010

'Fake pilot' arrested moments before take-off

Dutch police spokesman: "He was very relieved to be arrested"

A Swedish pilot without a valid licence to fly has been arrested at Amsterdam as he was about to fly a jet with 101 passengers to Turkey, Dutch police say.

The 41-year-old man said he had been flying for European airlines for 13 years and had logged 10,000 hours.

Police said he once had a licence to fly small planes but it had expired and it did not allow him to fly large jets.

Reports say the man was relieved his long deception was uncovered and tore off his pilot's stripes in the cockpit.

Turkey's Corendon Airlines said he had been flying for the airline for two years and had "expertly misled the company with his false papers".

The airline said it had been alerted by police and had a pilot standing by to fly the Boeing 737 from Amsterdam's Schiphol airport to Ankara.

Dutch police were acting on a tip-off from Swedish authorities.

The man is in custody awaiting trial for forging documents and flying without a licence.

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