A German woman has been arrested after being found on a plane at Gatwick Airport without a passport or a boarding pass before passengers were due to take their seats.
Sussex Police were called just after 7am this morning to a report that the 51-year-old intruder had been found on the easyJet aircraft before boarding had officially begun.
Both easyjet and Gatwick have failed to offer any explanation for the worrying security breach – which caused the flight to be delayed by more than an hour – but claim they are investigating.
‘The plane was rescreened for security purposes and all the passengers were allowed to board and continue with their journey.’
She was arrested on suspicion of entering a restricted area, an offence under airport legislation, without permission and remains in custody.
The plane’s passengers were instructed to go through security screening in the North Terminal again before being allowed to board.
According to easyJet’s website the flight to Tenerife departed at 8.45am, which was one hour and 15 minutes behind schedule after ‘additional security checks’ were carried out.
Gatwick Airport has confirmed the startling incident but have offered nothing in the way of an explanation.
A spokesman said: ‘This morning, a passenger attempted to board flight EZY8703 without a boarding pass. The individual was subjected to the full security search and screening processes, and there was no risk to passenger security.
‘As a precautionary measure, all passengers on flight EZY8703 disembarked the plane to be rechecked through security. We are investigating this matter with all relevant parties.’
A spokesperson for easyjet also confirmed the worrying security breach and apologised to passengers.
They said: ‘The delay was caused by additional security screening of all passengers.
‘This was carried out as a precaution after a passenger attempted to board without the correct documentation.
‘EasyJet’s staff alerted the local police. The passenger is now in police custody and the matter is now being investigated by the police and the airport. EasyJet has apologised to all passengers for any inconvenience experienced.’