The drone attack which brought chaos to thousands of Christmas travellers at Gatwick Airport was reportedly an inside job, a source has claimed.
A disgruntled employee is suspected to be the person responsible for flying the drone, bringing misery to passengers at the Sussex airport.
According to Whitehall sources, police believe either a current or former employee was behind the December 19 incident, which saw 1,000 flights cancelled and an estimated 140,000 passengers affected.
Police have now collected 130 witness accounts and made over 1,000 door-to-door enquiries since the disruption as part of their investigation, the Times reported.
Sussex Police were initially criticised for their handling of the drone attack, after wrongly arresting a couple and then suggesting there may not have been a drone at all.
The investigation has led officers to believe the attack must have been carried out by someone who would understand the layout of the airport.
The Whitehall source also claimed the drone could have “hidden” behind structures and buildings.
“[The drone pilot] knew the blind spots for it, where it could not be ‘hit’. It was clearly someone with really good knowledge of Gatwick, someone who had worked there,” the source said.
“Hypothetically it could have been a disgruntled employee.”
Gatwick Airport Limited had previously offered a £50,000 reward through Crimestoppers, for information leading to the arrest and conviction of those responsible for the criminal act that disrupted flights.
The force said 50 officers had been working on the case at its height to find whoever may be responsible for the chaos.
A spokeswoman for Sussex Police said: “We are keeping an open mind about who is responsible and their motives.”