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BRUSSELS: Belgian police opened an investigation Tuesday into serious airplane maintenance errors that a government minister says could amount to attempted sabotage.
Transport Secretary Etienne Schouppe said the defects at Brussels-based Sabena Technics "could not just be the result of neglect but could have had serious consequences."
Sabena Technics Managing Director Willy Buysse told VTM network the defects were in "non-critical systems" like intercoms. The defects were discovered and corrected after an in-house security check and before the planes were returned to the airline companies.
The company is planning to lay off 350 of its 1,100 employees at the Brussels terminal and there are fears a disgruntled worker might be responsible for the action. The work force went on strike early Tuesday to protest the planned layoffs.
Sabena Technics is an affiliate of the TAT Group and specializes in the maintenance of civil and military planes.