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Last Updated: Thursday, 12 June, 2003, 12:23 GMT 13:23 UK
1.5m plane theft jury retires
Crate where defendant allegedly hid
Mr Watson said he was in Africa when the theft attempt took place
A jury has retired to consider its verdict in the trial of a man accused of stowing on board a plane and trying to steal 1.5m worth of pesetas.

Rawson Watson, 37, of Marlborough Road, Gillingham, Kent, denies attempted theft and causing a fire hazard aboard the Boeing 767.

He is accused of trying to steal the money after stowing away in the luggage hold when the plane flew to Spain from Heathrow in January 2000.

During the Old Bailey trial the prosecution said he made two boxes on route, one to hide in and a smaller one to hold 1.5m in Spanish pesetas, which were loaded on board in Madrid.

The jury was told the theft was foiled when loaders dropped the box in which the thief was hiding.

But Mr Watson, who was arrested in October 2003, said he was not on the plane but was backpacking in Africa at the time.

The judge, Recorder of London Michael Hyam, told the jury, "The question is whether the defendant is the person who fell out of the box as it was being unloaded."

Stowaway 'was in Africa'
04 Jun 03  |  Kent
Jury shown stowaway box
03 Jun 03  |  Kent

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