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Friday, 5 July, 2002, 19:33 GMT 20:33 UK
Hunt for clues to LA shooting motive
Officials remove the body of one of the three people killed
Hadayet killed two people before being shot himself
Security agencies in both California and Cairo are trying to find the motive for a gun attack at Los Angeles airport in which an Egyptian man killed two people before being shot dead himself.

FBI agents have searched the apartment in Irvine, California of the gunman - identified as Hesham Hadayet - who had worked as a limousine driver in the United States for 10 years.

Hesham Mohamed Ali Hadayet
Hadayet was identified from fingerprints and vehicle records

Hadayet's wife and sister, who are visiting their family in Cairo, have been questioned by police there.

The attack, at the check-in desk of Israeli airline El Al, also injured three people, include a security officer who received multiple stab wounds.

The mayor of Los Angeles, James Hahn, said early indications were that Hadayet had acted alone.

The FBI said it was not ruling out terrorism as a motive - but there was nothing to suggest that at the moment.

"We have not determined whether he had any anti-Israeli views," FBI agent Richard Garcia told news conference on Friday, saying it was still "very difficult to determine the exact motive".

Israel has said it has no doubt that the shooting was a terrorist act.

Police took away a computer, books, binders, and bags of other material from Hadayet's apartment.

Three people were also wounded in the shooting, which came as Americans celebrated their first Independence Day since the 11 September attacks on a high state of alert.

Cairo link

Hadayet was registered in the US as a "resident alien".

His wife and children left the US to visit Egypt last week, although the FBI did not know whether their departure was connected in some way with Thursday's shooting.

FBI agents at suspect's house
Hadayet's apartment was searched by the FBI
The day of the attack was Hadayet's 41st birthday.

Egyptian police visited the apartment of Hadayet's father in Cairo on Friday morning, according to the Associated Press news agency.

The US embassy is trying to arrange an interrogation of Mrs Hadayet and other relatives by American investigators.

Eyewitness accounts

There has been a cautious reaction to the attack in the US, with the government and many Americans seeing it as not necessarily related to the 11 September attacks.

The gunman, who was later found to be carrying two handguns and a six-inch knife, had approached another person at the ticket counter and opened fire shortly before midday, police said.

Passengers and workers hid behind counters and in offices until an El Al security guard shot the gunman.

"The first couple of shots, everybody just stood there, frozen like I was," said Hakin Hasidh, who was standing in the line next to the El Al counter.

After hearing two shots, Mr Hasidh said he turned and saw the gunman fire at passengers in line.

One of the victims has been named as Yakov Aminov, aged 46. He had been dropping friends off at the airport, hospital officials said.

A woman in her 20s was also killed. The airline said she was an employee of a company that provides ground services to El Al at the airport.

 WATCH/LISTEN
 ON THIS STORY
The BBC's Stephen Sackur
"After the bloodshed, the investigation"
Matthew McLaughlin, FBI
"The suspect moved to the United States from Egypt in 1992"

Talking PointTALKING POINT
Airport security
What more needs to be done to tighten it up?
See also:

05 Jul 02 | Americas
05 Jul 02 | Americas
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04 Jul 02 | Americas
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02 Jul 02 | Americas
05 Oct 01 | Europe
05 Jul 02 | Americas
05 Jul 02 | Americas
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