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West German Pilot Who Landed at Red Square Charged

July 28, 1987|United Press International

MOSCOW — The Soviet Union today charged a West German teen-ager with three crimes, including violation of Soviet airspace and hooliganism, for landing his airplane near the Kremlin--an act that triggered a major shake-up in the Soviet armed forces.

The trial for Mathias Rust, 19, will take place within one month, said Foreign Ministry spokesman Gennady Gerasimov.

Rust, 19, has been held in a KGB prison in Moscow since he landed his single-engine Cessna 172 in Red Square May 28 after flying through 450 miles of some of the most heavily guarded airspace in the world.

If convicted on all three counts--violation of rules for international flight, illegal entry into the Soviet Union and hooliganism--Rust faces a maximum of 16 years in jail and a fine of up to $1,600 plus the confiscation of his aircraft.

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