US Troops Fire on 'Trespass' Vehicle at RAF Base in Britain

FILE - This is a  Jan. 8, 2015 file photo of  U.S. Air Force Base, RAF Mildenhall in Suffolk Eastern England.  (Chris Radburn/PA File,  via AP)
FILE - This is a Jan. 8, 2015 file photo of U.S. Air Force Base, RAF Mildenhall in Suffolk Eastern England. (Chris Radburn/PA File, via AP)

U.S. personnel fired shots at a vehicle that drove past a checkpoint Monday and came close to a V-22 Osprey tilt-rotor aircraft at Royal Air Force base Mildenhall in Britain, British authorities said.

The base in Suffolk on Britain's east coast, about 97 miles northeast of London, was temporarily put on lockdown over the "significant incident," but British police later said the security breach was being treated as an act of "trespass" and not terrorism.

Superintendent Kim Warner of the Suffolk Police said that a 44-year-old man driving the vehicle who was not further identified was arrested after the vehicle was stopped by U.S. security, the BBC reported.

Earlier, Suffolk Police issued a statement saying "Shots were fired by American service personnel and a man has been detained with cuts and bruises and taken into custody."

The vehicle was finally stopped near a V-22 Osprey aircraft on the tarmac, the BBC said. It was unclear whether the Osprey was an MV-22 flown by the Marines or an Air Force CV-22.

U.S. Air Force aerial refuelers are based at Mildenhall, and U.S. Special Operations forces are also believed to use the base.

RAF Mildenhall and RAF Lakenheath, another nearby base used by the U.S. Air Force, have both been subjected to terror threats over the past few years, according to Sky News.

Last year, a British-born "committed supporter" of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, was sentenced to life in prison for planning a terrorist attack on five bases used by the U.S. Air Force in Britain, including RAF Mildenhall.

-- Richard Sisk can be reached at Richard.Sisk@Military.com.

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