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Berlin man caught directing flight traffic with radio

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Berlin man caught directing flight traffic with radio

Old 29th Jan 2021, 16:08
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Berlin man caught directing flight traffic with radio

https://apnews.com/article/arrests-b...5ed5e6461669bc
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Old 30th Jan 2021, 07:16
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It's happened in the UK several times at several airfields including Manchester and at many airfields in the USA.
Pity most airfields have withdrawn their VDF installations; it would make it much easier to trace the offenders.
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Old 2nd Feb 2021, 19:47
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Playing ATC in Berlin

If this turns out to be true, I hope they throw the book at him.

https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/world...io/ar-BB1ddhUs

Berlin man caught directing flight traffic with radio
BERLIN (AP) — A man has been arrested in Berlin on allegations he made radio contact with air traffic, including police helicopters, and gave fake flight orders while impersonating an aviation official, German police said Friday.
Police say a 32-year-old Berlin man has been arrested on allegations he had been making radio contact with air traffic, including police helicopters, and given fake flight orders while impersonating an aviation official. (Patrick Pleul/dpa via AP) The 32-year-old, whose identity wasn't released in line with German privacy laws, was arrested Thursday night in the capital's eastern Koepenick district, police said.
Police were able to swoop in on his apartment after he made contact with a police helicopter that was dispatched to the neighborhood in the hope of flushing him out.
During a search of his home, police found two radios that transmitted on the frequencies needed to make contact with aircraft.
“For everyone who has been asking about our police helicopter operations in Koepenick, an unusual arrest,” Berlin police tweeted, with a link to more details.
The man is alleged to have made contact with pilots of passenger and transport aircraft, as well as state and federal police helicopters, over the past six months, giving “potentially dangerous” instructions and becoming increasingly professional with his communications.
No accidents or other incidents are known to have been caused by his actions, police said.
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Old 3rd Feb 2021, 07:38
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This is not unique , generally spotted easily by ATC when the pilots query the instruction or just read it back... I never heard of a serious incident anywhere as a result. The perpetrators are generally caught fairly easily or should I said used to , as this one apparently took a few months to catch., which is very unusual. That is perhaps the news bits here.. The Germans have a special unit for this , very fast and very efficient ..probably a left over from the experience they gained during WW2 against the resistance.
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Old 3rd Feb 2021, 07:45
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Using a police helicopter to home in on him was the new part to me. It's pretty standard to automatically map any emitters today.
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Old 3rd Feb 2021, 13:20
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You need to be close - very close to car=tch someone doing that, and to do so you have to be right there when he is transmitting, an keep him transmitting.
Quite likely the police helo was in the area as bait to get him on the air.
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Old 3rd Feb 2021, 13:45
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A tiny handheld on the ground within some populated area is not strong enough.
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Old 3rd Feb 2021, 15:24
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you have to be right there when he is transmitting, an keep him transmitting.
No, that was WW2 technology. They have other and better tools today .
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Old 3rd Feb 2021, 15:44
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Already being discussed here: PPRuNe: Berlin man caught directing flight traffic with radio
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Old 3rd Feb 2021, 16:16
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Originally Posted by Less Hair View Post
A tiny handheld on the ground within some populated area is not strong enough.
Well, way back when.. I (OK, my company) supplied King Hussein of Jordan with a small handheld which he used to talk to Skylab. And tickled pink he was too! The radio was a Motorola handheld, frequently supplied to police forces but was modified to work on the amateur band.
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Old 3rd Feb 2021, 17:08
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I just wish that they would put half as much effort in catching the bar stewards who seem to take delight in targeting landing aircraft with [email protected] pens.... fortunately it's only ever happened once to me but even so.......
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Old 3rd Feb 2021, 17:17
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Originally Posted by ATC Watcher View Post
. I never heard of a serious incident anywhere as a result.
I think most have "never heard of a serious incident" because the intimate details of these things, if they occurred, should not be in the public domain. I was involved in the investigation of a very serious incident involving a well-known international carrier, operating from Asia to North America, on approach to a large airport, in IFR wx, who accepted a turn "for spacing" that took the aircraft immediately toward higher terrain (above the current altitude of the aircraft). That situation was resolved with VERY little time or airspace remaining before a nasty outcome.

I will not comment further on how the incident itself was resolved, nor the specifics of where and when it occurred, except to say the offender ("rogue transmitter" as we called it) was caught. My sole point in posting this to emphasize that these things can and do occur and we should not give more publicity to them. Remember the good old days of "Bead Window"? Well, with the internet, and social media, there are great risks to inadvertently providing information to people with malicious intent.

Grizz
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Old 3rd Feb 2021, 17:31
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Originally Posted by KelvinD View Post
Well, way back when.. I (OK, my company) supplied King Hussein of Jordan with a small handheld which he used to talk to Skylab. And tickled pink he was too! The radio was a Motorola handheld, frequently supplied to police forces but was modified to work on the amateur band.
This might be of interest: https://science.nasa.gov/science-new...000/ast21aug_1

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Old 4th Feb 2021, 06:47
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Originally Posted by FullMetalJackass View Post
I just wish that they would put half as much effort in catching the bar stewards who seem to take delight in targeting landing aircraft with [email protected] pens.... fortunately it's only ever happened once to me but even so.......
Not just pens; I recently bought a [email protected] red dot sight for one of my air rifles; £7.59p on e-bay.
It's about 2 inches long and would be equally as dangerous to pilots so naturally I make sure it's never pointed skywards.
In the early days of FLIR development at Farnborough, the test aircrew oftten showed us the videotapes of their night time flights and on one occasion (Varsity operating at 250ft agl) someone on the ground shone an ordinary torch at the aircraft and it 'overloaded' the sensor causing the screen to momentarily go blank. Course they soon developed a 'fix' for this and it w(sh)ouldn't happen nowadays.
(Thinks: Why on earth has PPRuNe software changed the 'a' in 'laser' for an '@'?)
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Old 4th Feb 2021, 07:58
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wiggy: Many thanks for that link. I think the radio used was a Motorola HT440 (it could equally have been an MT500; we were pushing both models around the Middle East at the time). You can't beat a bit of early morning nostalgia!
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Old 7th Feb 2021, 21:01
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Back in the 1990s, Luton had a serious problem. Took a good while to find the culprits, but it was children using their dad's transceiver. He was learning to fly at the airport and lived very locally. Handy back then when it first happened to have an Aldis lamp, so land on the green. I remember a Britannia 757 on long final at about 0400 on a lovely summer morning, I had said that there was an inspection is progress on the runway and continue. About a min later the crew then said 'Britannia xxxx, cleared to land runways 26'. We then had a quick discussion and it landed safely using my RT backed up with light signals. I know I shouldn't laugh, but one busy Sunday afternoon, I transferred G-OCAA to the tower, crew called then all we heard was 'man in the tower in a c***! Pilot flying the CAA HS125 denied saying it! Meanwhile, some of us in radar were laughing and agreeing with the child's comments on the R/T! Seriously though, if you have an idiot with a transceiver, it can be a serious safety issues.
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Old 8th Feb 2021, 10:30
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I informed a Manx ATP crew that we were receiving dubious calls at Luton, to which his reply was " we know, we were recently unpolitely told to go away!"
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Old 8th Feb 2021, 18:04
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Originally Posted by Buster the Bear View Post
Back in the 1990s, Luton had a serious problem. Took a good while to find the culprits, but it was children using their dad's transceiver. He was learning to fly at the airport and lived very locally. Handy back then when it first happened to have an Aldis lamp, so land on the green. I remember a Britannia 757 on long final at about 0400 on a lovely summer morning, I had said that there was an inspection is progress on the runway and continue. About a min later the crew then said 'Britannia xxxx, cleared to land runways 26'. We then had a quick discussion and it landed safely using my RT backed up with light signals. I know I shouldn't laugh, but one busy Sunday afternoon, I transferred G-OCAA to the tower, crew called then all we heard was 'man in the tower in a c***! Pilot flying the CAA HS125 denied saying it! Meanwhile, some of us in radar were laughing and agreeing with the child's comments on the R/T! Seriously though, if you have an idiot with a transceiver, it can be a serious safety issues.
Similar time, different offender - one of the female controllers was threatened over the r/t & I was told I'd been followed home previously & my wife would be attacked in the house whilst I was working...not pleasant...
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