German police release two Russians held over plane hijack scare

Berlin police have released two Russian men who were being held for questioning after concerns were raised that they could have been planning to hijack a Moscow-bound jet.

The two men, who were not part of the crew but held pilot licenses, were detained at Tegel airport after a woman told police she overheard them having a suspicious conversation.

The men turned out to be employees of Russia’s Orenburg Airlines. After summoning their colleagues at the airline company and discovering no grounds for arrest, they apologized and released the two men.

Under German law, even a joking about hijacking a plane can result in a three-year prison sentence.