Germanwings co-pilot was on sick leave, hid evidence: Prosecutors

Berlin, March 27:

The prosecution of the German city of Dusseldorf announced on Friday that the co-pilot, who allegedly crashed the Germanwings plane into a mountainside in the French Alps deliberately, had a medical leave note for the day of the flight, which he hid from the company.


The note was found torn to bits among other documents implicating mental illness when the assailant’s home was searched, Efe news agency reported.

However, prosecution sources denied that a suicide note was found in the search.

Investigations revealed on Thursday indicated that the German co-pilot of the Germanwings aircraft, Andreas Lubitz, 27, intentionally crashed the plane.

All on board the Airbus 320 were killed when the aircraft crashed around 11 a.m. on Tuesday in the Alpes-de-Haute-Provence in the southern French Alps.

French General Prosecutor Brice Robin announced the findings on Thursday after analysing the audio recording extracted from the plane’s black box, which revealed in part what happened inside the cockpit during the last 30 minutes of the flight, which was en route from Barcelona to Dusseldorf, Germany, with 150 people on board.

Robin said that indications were that the co-pilot deliberately crashed the aircraft after locking out the pilot from the cockpit.

Earlier on Friday, a spokesman of Lufthansa, the parent company of Germanwings, told Xinhua news agency the co-pilot had passed all Lufthansa tests but declined to comment on his mental condition.

As the company was unable to access the co-pilot’s clinical data that has been reported by the media, Lufthansa had no comment to offer on those media reports, the Lufthansa spokesman said.

German news site Spiegel Online reported earlier that after the house search, investigators found evidence that the co-pilot was mentally ill.

The Bild newspaper also reported possible mental illness of the co-pilot, based on a six-year-old memorandum of the German Federal Aviation Office.

The Lufthansa spokesman added that although the company believed that the current psychological testing system for pilots was not in question, there was no doubt that they would continue to improve this system.

“There will be specific measures introduced, but details still need further discussion,” he said.

On Friday, Duesseldorf police told Xinhua that there was no evidence to confirm that the 27-year-old co-pilot, Andreas Lubitz, was mentally ill.

After hours of search on Thursday at the co-pilot’s apartment in Duesseldorf, police said they have nothing new to talk about the investigation.

As for media reports about Lubitz’s mental problems, police said it was “a manifest error of interpretation of the English reporter”.

“It has only been said that the evidence has been found and must be evaluated,” a police officer said, adding that prosecutors would decide when the results could come out. IANS

Also Read

Comments are closed.