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Rising prospects for airlines boosts prosperity in East of England

Ryanair, which has its main UK base at Stansted Airport in Essex, has announced half yearly profits are up by a third.

Meanwhile Luton-based Easyjet, says strong passenger demand at the Bedfordshire airport has enabled it to launch six new routes with more on the way.

Thousands of people are employed in the airline industry across the Anglia region and travel experts say increasingly it's driving prosperity here.

Click below to watch a report by ITV News Anglia's Russell Hookey

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Audio: RAF pilot 'confronts Latvian plane'

Aviation enthusiasts EGXWinfo Group have posted an audio clip online, which they claim to be a recording of an RAF pilot trying to make contact with the Latvian plane.

In it, the pilot warns that the plane will be shot down if it does not follow his instructions.

The Ministry of Defence refused to confirm or deny whether the audio was genuine.

Audio from SoundCloud/The EGXWinfo Group

Essex Police statement: "Military jets were deployed on a precautionary basis"

"Military jets were deployed on a precautionary basis when a Latvian registered cargo plane was diverted to Stansted. This was due to a loss of communication with the aircraft. The aircraft landed safely at Stansted airport at around 5.20pm on Wednesday October 29. All three people who were on board have been spoken to by police, it was established that everything was in order and reason for the short loss of communication was due to a change in airspace jurisdiction. Essex Police is not investigating the incident and the aircraft will be able to continue its journey to Birmingham when it is ready."

– Spokesperson, Essex Police

"Loud bang" was caused by RAF Typhoon jets going supersonic

The RAF has confirmed that they scrambled 2 Typhoon jets to intercept a Russian-built Latvian cargo plane.

A "loud bang" was heard in the Kent area earlier this afternoon, and the RAF now say that the bang was as a result of the Typhoons going supersonic.

They also added that they were sorry to anyone that they startled during the interception.

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RAF jets accompany plane to Stansted Airport after "loud bang"

Stansted Airport. Credit: PA

Stansted Airport has confirmed to ITV News that two RAF jets have accompanied a plane which has now landed at the airport.

It follows earlier reports of a "loud bang" being heard in the Kent area at about 4.40pm.

Kent police have now confirmed that the "loud bang" felt by residents was related to the RAF activity.

Passenger numbers pass the 19 million mark at Stansted Airport

Stansted Airport. Credit: PA

The number of people using Stansted Airport has passed 19 million for the first time in four years.

It marks a big breakthrough for the airport which saw passengers numbers drop to just over 17 million during the recession.

It was also a bumper September for Stansted. It flew nearly two million passengers last month - up 14% compared to the same time last year.

Woman charged with smuggling £90,000 cocaine through Stansted

A Polish woman has been charged with drug smuggling after Border Force officers at Stansted Airport seized cocaine worth an estimated £90,000.

Wieslawa Barbara Kureda, 56, of no fixed UK address, was stopped at 11.45pm on Tuesday after arriving from Abu Dhabi via Dublin.

Following searches of baggage, officers recovered cocaine weighing between 2kg and 4kg. Tests are continuing on the weight and purity of the drug.

Kureda was arrested by the Border Force and later questioned by investigators from the National Crime Agency's Border Policing Command. She was charged with attempting to import a class A drug.

She appeared at Chelmsford Magistrates' Court yesterday and was remanded in custody until her next appearance at Chelmsford Crown Court on December 15.

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