Sunday, 11 June 2017

British men quizzed over 'terror talk' after easyJet plane lands in Germany

Three British men are being held over suspicious conversations held on board a UK-bound easyJet flight.
The pilot decided to land after passengers told airline staff the men used words including "bomb" and "explosive", the German newspaper Bild reported.

Flight EZY3246 had been on its way from Ljubljana, Slovenia, to Stansted on Saturday night and was forced to divert to Cologne, Germany.

Some 151 passengers used emergency slides to evacuate the Airbus 319, leaving nine needing medical treatment.

A backpack was blown up and a witness said two men were led away from the aircraft in handcuffs.
The third man was held later.

German police searched the aircraft and found no explosives in the men's luggage or on the plane.

The remaining passengers were allowed back on the jet and were due to fly back to the UK at 11am German time.

German state prosecutors said passengers reported the men were talking about "terrorist matters".

The men arrested were aged 31, 38 and 48, a spokesman for Cologne police said.

Bild said the men worked for a London company and were returning to London after a business trip.
A German police spokesman said they were being investigated on suspicion they were preparing to carry out "a serious violent crime that could have jeopardised the state".

But he said it was unclear if any charges would be brought.

The emergency evacuation led to 20 departing flights being significantly delayed and two flights being cancelled.

A passenger on the flight told Sky News they were initially told the aircraft was diverting for "operational reasons".

He said police gathered outside the plane, which was escorted to a quiet area of the airport.

"We were told they would board to deal with a security situation," said the passenger.

"When they boarded, they went to the back and took off two men plus two other passengers, who were the ones that reported the two men to cabin crew.

"The two men were questioned outside separately, then handcuffed and taken away and police wanted us off the plane quickly, so we had to use emergency slides."

He said there was no panic on board and everyone was briefly questioned by police and told they would be put up in a hotel.

However, the passenger said it was 3am on Sunday before they were finally provided with a room.

SKY     News.