17 August 2022

Alleged Canberra Airport shooter named as Ali Rachid Ammoun

| Albert McKnight
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Man with white hair in a suit

Ali Rachid Ammoun, 63, has been charged over the shooting at Canberra Airport. Photo: Facebook.

The man arrested over the shooting at Canberra Airport on Sunday afternoon (14 August) has been formally charged and is in custody. He made no application for bail.

Ali Rachid Ammoun, 63, is accused of using a revolver to shoot windows at the airport, causing chaos at the facility and sending it into lockdown.

He appeared in the ACT Magistrates Court on Monday (15 August) where he was formally charged with recklessly shooting at the airport, unauthorised possession of a .38/200 Smith & Wesson revolver and intentionally shooting the revolver to cause a named person fear for their safety.

Wearing a Hawaiian shirt and appearing over audio-visual link, Mr Ammoun said he understood each of his three charges.

His Legal Aid lawyer Tamzin Lee said he would not apply for bail and also said her client wanted the ABC to be excluded from the media-filled courtroom gallery.

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Magistrate Robert Cook refused, saying, “this is an open court and the ABC have a right to report on such matters”.

Prosecutor Anthony Williamson sought for Mr Ammoun to be taken for an assessment at a psychiatric treatment facility, but Magistrate Cook said he would not make that order.

He remanded Mr Ammoun, who did not enter pleas, in custody to face court on 5 September.

ACT Policing alleged Mr Ammoun arrived at Canberra Airport at about 1:20 pm before sitting on seats near the southern check-in desks on the first floor.

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At about 1:25 pm, he allegedly drew a firearm and fired a number of shots into windows of the building.

Members of the public called Triple Zero and AFP Airport Police stationed in the airport terminal apprehended Mr Ammoun. No one was injured during the incident.

Canberra Airport was evacuated and police secured the area – including confirming he was allegedly acting alone.

Aircraft carrying passengers had to remain on the airfield during the evacuation, but the airport returned to normal operations at about 5 pm.

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