An American military veteran was arrested by police in Fort Lauderdale after a shooting spree at the city’s airport which left five dead and six injured.

Among the victims was Olga Woltering, 84, from Ipswich, Suffolk, who had lived in Atlanta, Georgia, since the 1960s.

She was preparing to go on a cruise with her husband to celebrate their 65th wedding anniversary.

Iraq war veteran Esteban Santiago, 26, told the FBI that he was hearing voices urging him to fight for Isis.

He is due to appear in court today charged with shooting dead five people and wounding six others at the Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood international airport in Florida.

The case has exposed failings in US gun control and mental health care. Santiago had suffered psychiatric problems since serving in Iraq in 2011.

He had his Walther 9mm semi-automatic handgun confiscated in November after walking into an FBI office in Anchorage, Alaska, and saying that the CIA had taken over his mind and he was having thoughts of terrorism.

The firearm was returned to him by police last month because he was not judged to be mentally ill.

Witnesses said Santiago loaded a gun carried in his luggage on Friday before shooting at people in a baggage claim area as they tried to run and hide.

Hundreds of passengers were forced to wait on the tarmac at the airport while police cleared the terminal.

Airlines were forced to cancel or divert flights as Fort Lauderdale airport was closed on Friday afternoon following the shooting. 

Fort Lauderdale is a popular beach destination north of Miami in Florida. It is also a major cruise port.