Mathias Rust

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This is the guy who embarassed the Russians and astounded the world, when in 1987 at the age of 19 flew a Cessna 172B undetected all the way from Malmi airport in Helsinki, landing the craft in Moscow’s Red Square.
He was sentenced to 8 years hard labour but released the following August.

Thanks for the following description from SuPi:

“He flew his plane over the sea and then dived under the radar. When he suddenly disappeared from the radar he was first believed to have crashed into the baltic sea. Major search effort was put to place in the coast of Finland before the news came from Russia.”

Where are they now?

His post-publicity life is quite eventful and interesting, hard to believe at some points:
” After serving 18 months in Soviet prison, Rust worked for some time in a hospital in Rissen, Germany. He fell in love with one of the nurses, but when she rejected him, he lost it and stabbed her with a knife. For this attempted murder, he was sentenced to two and a half years in prison from 1991 to 1993.

In April 1994 Rust suddenly announced that he would return to Russia, visiting an orphanage, for which he had become the patron. He then disappeared for two years. A roumor said he had died in Russia, but it later turned out he had been working as a shoe-salesman in Moscow.

Two years later, at the age of 28, and after having travelled all over the world, Rust returned to Germany. According to an interview in 1997, he was going to marry an Indian girl, Geetha, the daughter of a wealthy Indian tee-salesman. Rust himself converted to hinduism, and the marriage was said to be held as a Hindu-ceremony in India. The couple would then move back to Germany, and these are the last news we’ve heard about this controversial adventurer. ”

2001: Mathias appears in court on charges he stole a cashmere-pullover, outcome unknown.

Update August, 03: Word comes via a reader that Mathias has launched some kind of “think tank” called Orion & Isis which endevours to “work on issues which contain non-violent solutions to resolve conflicts between government, ethnic or religious institutions. Applicants need to be in possession of an administrative position with the connected powers of attorney or in possession of major influence from any other level.”

Update July 2004: Bernard from Germany informs us that Mathias is now living in Berlin married to his second wife Athena.

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