BERLIN, Germany – Details emerged Thursday, March 26, about the co-pilot who French authorities say “deliberately” initiated the descent of the Germanwings flight that crashed this week, killing all 150 people on board.
The 28-year-old German, Andreas Lubitz, had worked for Germanwings, a Lufthansa subisidiary, since September 2013, a Lufthansa spokeswoman said Thursday.
He qualified as a pilot at the Lufthansa training center in the northern city of Bremen and began flying for Germanwings immediately after completing the course. He had 630 hours of flight experience, she said.
Lubitz was from the western town of Montabaur and lived with his parents there while keeping a flat in Duesseldorf, a Germanwings hub and the city for which the doomed flight from Barcelona was bound, Montabaur mayor Gabriele Wieland told national news agency, DPA.
French prosecutor Brice Robin said Lubitz was “not known by us” to have links to terrorism or extremists, and that German authorities are expected to provide additional information on his background and private life later Thursday or Friday, March 27.
Lubitz was registered as a member of a private flight club, LSC Westerwald, and was an avid runner who often took part in local races, according to public records.
The captain of the two-man crew, who has not been identified, had more than 10 years of experience with German flag carrier Lufthansa and its subsidiaries and had clocked up more than 6,000 hours of flight time, most of them on Airbus planes.
The daily Bild named him only as German national Patrick S., in keeping with strict privacy laws, and said he was a father of two children.
Lufthansa said it had no plans to name the flight personnel at this stage of the investigation “to protect the crew and their families,” a spokesman told Agence France-Presse. – Rappler.com
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