A drunken plane-spotter was arrested just 65ft from Birmingham Airport s runway after scaling an 8ft perimeter fence for a better view of the aircraft. Aftab Ali downed two bottles of vodka before sparking a security alert by climbing over the barrier, which was topped with razor wire, at the height of the holiday season earlier this month. He was arrested only 20 metres short of the runway, where planes were taking off and landing, and told police the fence was in his way and blocking his view.
The 23-year-old, of Witton Road, Aston, appeared at Birmingham Magistrates Court to admit a charge under the Aviation Security Act of entering a security restricted area without authority. He was fined 300, with 115 costs, after the court heard the offence did not carry a prison term. Ed Counsell, prosecuting, said police were alerted at 9.20am on August 12.
There are signs clearly stating it s a restricted area and the fence also indicates that, he said.
(Image: Birmingham Post and Mail)
He had injuries to his hands and legs from climbing the fence which had barbed wire on the top.
He was clearly drunk, and laughing, saying: I want to see the planes .
After being taken to a police station, Ali told officers he had finished a nightshift and drunk two bottles of vodka.
He said he was lying on the grass mound next to the perimeter fence but decided the fence was spoiling his view so climbed over it but then fell over, Mr Counsell said. Ash Mistry, defending, said Ali had drunk a lot of alcohol in a short space of time .
He then decided to go and watch the planes but, in his intoxicated state, decided to climb the permimeter fence, he said.
It was 8ft tall and had razor wire at the top and, consequently, he suffered cuts to his legs and hands. Magistrates told Ali that his actions could have had extremely serious consequences for passengers if planes had needed to be diverted.
Asked after the hearing whether the alert had triggered a security upgrade at the airport s perimeter, a spokeswoman said the area was compliant with requirements set out by the Department for Transport .
She said: We can confirm that a man was apprehended in accordance with Birmingham Airport s security surveillance.
At no time was he close to any aeroplanes, passengers or infrastructure.
BRUTAL robbers knocked a security guard to the ground and stole 15,000 he was carrying. The security guard, aged 44, had collected the money from the post office in College Road, Handsworth1 and was walking back to his van when he was knocked to the ground by two men. They wrestled the cash box, which contained around 15,000, from his grip before jumping into a waiting Audi A4 estate which sped away.
The getaway Audi was shortly found in Woodend in Handsworth Wood. It had been driven on stolen number plates. The incident happened just before 9am on Wednesday, August 16.
Police are appealing for any witnesses to the theft to contact them.
Two offenders knocked him to the floor and wrestled the cash box, containing around 15,000, from his grip, then jumped into a silver Audi A4 estate which sped away from the scene.
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Traces on the Audi reveal it was using stolen number plates It was found shortly after in Woodend, Handsworth Wood.
You may have information which could help police (Image: Press Association)
Anyone with information should contact Det Sgt Nicki Addison, or one of her team from Force CID team on 101.
The club have been reviewing their security procedures with Greater Manchester Police following terror attacks in Manchester, London and Paris in recent months. United have emailed season ticket holders with details of the new measures; there will now be enhanced searches of fans at turnstiles which ‘may take longer and as a result it is likely that queues will also be longer’. The size of bags allowed will also be reduced.
Supporters are being advised not to bring a bag larger than a small handbag (20cm x 15cm x 5cm) with them or they will have to leave it in a bag drop zone.
‘All bags will be searched and items larger than the size criteria must be left at one of the bag drop facilities, which are located near the ticket office and in E2 car park,’ an email sent on Friday read.
‘Bringing a bag will further delay your entry to the stadium (and will delay your departure after the game if you have to use a bag drop) and we therefore encourage you not to bring any bags or prohibited items to the stadium (if you have to bring a bag, we recommend you arrive at least two hours before kick-off).
‘Please do not be alarmed by the extra security measures (which will be in place for every match from now on), they are to ensure your time at Old Trafford is as safe as possible.’
The club also reminded season ticket holders that major roadworks on key roads surrounding the stadium have begun and will last for three years.
‘This will increase your journey time to and from the stadium if you travel by car and could impact your route and street parking,’ the memo added. As always, turnstiles will still open two hours before-kick off . For more details, visit www.manutd.com/gettinghere.