Venezuelan Authorities Link Crashed Plane Carrying Drugs to Mexican Government

A wrecked plane, discovered on 2 April in a Western region of Venezuela, was carrying nearly a ton of cocaine and was registered with the official fleet of Mexico’s Attorney General’s Office.

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The Cessna Conquest 441 XB-KGS crashed in the Venezuelan state Cojedes last Thursday. (www.controller.com)
The Cessna Conquest 441 XB-KGS crashed in the Venezuelan state Cojedes last Thursday. (www.controller.com)
By Z.C. Dutka
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Boa Vista, April 7th, 2015. (venezuelanalysis.com)- A wrecked plane, discovered on 2 April in a Western region of Venezuela, was carrying nearly a ton of cocaine and was registered with the official fleet of Mexico’s Attorney General’s Office.

Three bodies and 999 kilos of cocaine were found in the Cessna Conquest 441, which crashed on Thursday.

The remains of Norberto Filemon Miranda Perez and Francisco Javier Engombia Guadarrama were confirmed by the Commanding General of Venezuela’s Armed Forces on Saturday.

Miranda Perez, believed to be the pilot, was a regional director of the General Prosecutor’s Aerial Services, a branch of the justice department responsible for investigating federal and state crimes. He held office during the presidency of Felipe Calderon.

The third individual has not yet been identified, though documents naming a Bernardo Lisey Valdez were also found in the wreck.

Built in 1981 in the United States, the aircraft belonged to the Colombian firm Aerotaxi Calamar in the late 1990s, until it passed into Mexican ownership under unknown circumstances, eventually appearing as part of the Attorney General fleet in 2000 under the code XB-KGS.

No records indicating the Cessna’s transfer to private hands have been located, though a photo on jetphoto.com shows what may be the same aircraft in the Benito Juarez airport of Mexico City in 2007, with a new code – indicating new ownership.

According to Venezuelan authorities, the plane may have been downed by military efforts. Information was recorded of a bullet impacting an aircraft of similar characteristics that day, in the nearby region of Apure.

Mexico’s Foreign Ministry released a statement yesterday indicating the government’s intent to collaborate with Venezuelan authorities to uncover the details of the crash.

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