Rieu Not Yet Finished With Drone
Limburger by: Laurens Schellen
Where has it been? The in the beginning of July confiscated high-tech drone of André Rieu. Behind lock and key in a secured police depot somewhere in the Netherlands. As confirmed by the Aviation Oversight Commission.
The very much talked about drone of André Rieu which the police confiscated last month in Maastricht after one of his seven sold out performances on the Vrijthof, is still behind lock and key. In one of a specially equipped and well-guarded 'property seizure' installations of the national police according to spokesperson Dennis Janus of the Aviation Oversight Commission in Amsterdam. Janus will not reveal the exact location for security reasons.
Risky More than a month after the controversy surrounding the Rieu-drone it is still unclear whether the orchestra leader's unmanned aircraft will be returned to him. The costly little helicopter, weighing several kilos and equipped with high-tech equipment, circled in early July two evenings illegally over the Vrijthof recording the concerts for a feature film about the concert series. According to the police, flying a drone over a busy city center is by definition risky, and is therefore forbidden if flown without permission. Moreover, Maastricht is located in the approach path of arriving aircraft landing in the municipality of Beek.
According to John Drummer, a professional drone pilot, drones cannot be flown there under any circumstances. In answer to questions by this newspaper, Janus indicated that the investigation in this matter is still ongoing. "That should be completed within a few weeks and then the case will be transferred to the public prosecutor. Ultimately it will be the national public prosecutor for aviation matters who will decide on the punishment and penalties," Janus explained. The severity of the case is not yet known. "I cannot and will not further elaborate about this case. Normally you will not go to jail for flying a drone illegally. Unless you place air traffic or people in danger." Case laws show that in most cases fines are imposed. Also permanent confiscation of a 'bad' drone is a possibility.
Spectacular. Production manager and son, Pierre Rieu, was not available for comment yesterday, but was able to save the spectacular recordings by the flying robot in time. By the end of July, all the Vrijthof recording done by almost thirty cameras, were aired via satellite connection as a worldwide premier to almost two thousand cinemas. Just in England alone, where the movie played in almost 550 cinemas, receipts for the just one weekend showing were nearly one and one half million pounds. A huge contrast in comparison with the minuscule price tag of that mini-aircraft, which experts estimate to be between ten and twenty thousand.
Translation by John