BBC NEWS Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific Arabic Spanish Russian Chinese Welsh
BBCi CATEGORIES   TV   RADIO   COMMUNICATE   WHERE I LIVE   INDEX    SEARCH 

BBC NEWS
 You are in: UK: England
Front Page 
World 
UK 
England 
Northern Ireland 
Scotland 
Wales 
UK Politics 
Business 
Sci/Tech 
Health 
Education 
Entertainment 
Talking Point 
In Depth 
AudioVideo 


Commonwealth Games 2002

BBC Sport

BBC Weather

SERVICES 
Tuesday, 6 November, 2001, 17:04 GMT
Britons held in airport alert
Gatwick
The arrests were made at Gatwick Airport
Four Britons have been arrested at Gatwick Airport after an assortment of weapons was found in luggage from a US flight.

The discovery was made when customs officials searched bags that had been in the hold of a plane returning from Orlando, Florida on Saturday.

Police say the weapons included a stun gun, mace spray, five sets of knuckle-dusters, and two combat knives. None of the items had been carried on as hand-luggage.

The three youths and a man arrested at Gatwick had just flown in to the airport's South Terminal when they were stopped by customs officials.

They had boarded American Trans Air flight AMT 8702 at Orlando Sandford International Airport, 30 miles north of Orlando, at 1940 local time on 2 November.

Offensive weapons

On arrival at Gatwick, they were taken by police to Crawley. Three youths, aged 17, two from Redhill and one from Reigate, were cautioned and reprimanded.

Ben Harrington, 21, from Reigate, was charged with possession of offensive weapons. He is set to appear at Crawley magistrates' court on 9 November.

A police spokesman at the airport said if the items had been in hold luggage leaving Gatwick, they would have been discovered through normal screening procedures.

But Michael Caires, PR manager for Orlando Sandford International Airport, said that in the US, luggage placed in the hold of a plane was not routinely x-rayed, although spot-checks on bags were carried out.

 WATCH/LISTEN
 ON THIS STORY
The BBC's Jane Peel
"The police say they found weapons including a stun gun, mace spray and two combat knives"
See also:

16 Oct 01 | UK
Keeping air passengers safe
Internet links:


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

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


E-mail this story to a friend

Links to more England stories