BBC NEWS Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific Russian Polish Albanian Greek Czech Ukrainian Serbian Turkish Romanian
BBCi NEWS   SPORT   WEATHER   WORLD SERVICE   A-Z INDEX     

BBC News World Edition
 You are in: Europe  
News Front Page
Africa
Americas
Asia-Pacific
Europe
Middle East
South Asia
UK
Business
Entertainment
Science/Nature
Technology
Health
-------------
Talking Point
-------------
Country Profiles
In Depth
-------------
Programmes
-------------
BBC Sport
BBC Weather
SERVICES
-------------
LANGUAGES
EDITIONS
Wednesday, 30 October, 2002, 16:44 GMT
Sweden drops hijack inquiry
Kerim Chatty
Chatty tried to board a plane with a gun in his bag
Swedish police have dropped their hijacking inquiry against Kerim Chatty, who tried to get on a flight to London with a gun in his luggage.

His arrest sparked a major police inquiry, amid speculation of a possible al-Qaeda connection.


I haven't been able to find enough evidence that the purpose of the weapons possession was to hijack the plane

Chief prosecutor
Thomas Haggstrom
But prosecutors announced on Wednesday that the hijacking inquiry was being halted.

Charges relating to his possession of the gun are still being prepared, and officials say they are expected to be brought against Mr Chatty.

"I haven't been able to find enough evidence that the purpose of the weapons possession was to hijack the plane," said chief prosecutor Thomas Haggstrom.

'Mistake'

"According to his own account, it was a weapon that he has had for some time. His explanation was that he brought it by mistake."

Mr Chatty, 29, a Swedish man with a Tunisian father, was travelling to a Muslim conference in Birmingham when he was arrested at Vasteras airport outside Stockholm two months ago.


Despite this enormously careful investigation they haven't found anything that indicates he was going to hijack a plane

Defence lawyer
Nils Uggla
He was held in custody for a month before being released on bail while the inquiry proceeded.

He is thought to face a maximum four-year prison term if found guilty of firearms offences.

Mr Chatty's lawyer, Nils Uggla, praised the decision to drop the hijacking inquiry, which he said had been exhaustive.

"They've investigated everything there is to investigate," said Mr Uggla.

"Despite this enormously careful investigation they haven't found anything that indicates he was going to hijack a plane."

Mr Chatty has consistently denied connection with Islamic militants.

In 1996 he briefly received training at a flying school in the United States - like some of the 11 September hijackers - adding to speculation from intelligence sources that he might have had hijacking intentions.

See also:

30 Sep 02 | Europe
02 Sep 02 | Europe
02 Sep 02 | Europe
Internet links:


The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

Links to more Europe stories are at the foot of the page.


E-mail this story to a friend

Links to more Europe stories

© BBC ^^ Back to top

News Front Page | Africa | Americas | Asia-Pacific | Europe | Middle East |
South Asia | UK | Business | Entertainment | Science/Nature |
Technology | Health | Talking Point | Country Profiles | In Depth |
Programmes