The ground where a white plane crashed on the night of Sunday, March 10, 2019, is surrounded by police. Nobody can go to the area, but the photographs leaked by the comuneros show an aircraft totally burned. A little before 9:00 p.m. on Sunday, the people living in Rio Bravo -common Montecristi canton (Manabí) – heard a rumble in the Los Bajos sector, via Los Manantiales, between the Bravo and Cañar rivers.
These details were immediately reported to the ECU-911 system. In that place, firemen and agents found the ship, with license plate N 75RC, but already it was consumed by the flames. In addition, they discovered burned drugs, cell phone chargers, 16 fuel cans and a clandestine runway that was located 800 meters away.
In the middle of the first investigations, the police recovered 39 kilos of cocaine hydrochloride destined for Mexico. In a statement, the Directorate of Civil Aviation indicated that the Accident Investigation Board was activated immediately. The idea is to determine the causes of the incident.
According to General Luis Lara, police commander of Manabí, the plane was struck by the weight of the cargo. Apparently, he tried to take off and hit a tree. The police chief indicated that the aircraft did not have operating permits or flight plans authorized by the Aviation. It is not the first incident reported in the country.
On March 4, 2018, a white Cessna-type plane with registration number NI0666 crashed on Matorrillo Island, in the Mondragón sector, south of Guayaquil. The two people on board that aircraft were hospitalized and detained for investigations. Although this time no drugs or money were found, the agents say that now the planes are used to send substances to Central America or Mexico.
This type of aircraft has a storage capacity of up to 3 tons of drugs, according to agents. Police data warns that since 2003 to date, 20 small planes have been confiscated between the provinces of Manabí, Guayas, Los Ríos, Santa Elena, Esmeraldas and Santo Domingo. 107 people have been arrested in the operations.
In Manabí, police intelligence services have detected that the clandestine airstrips are mounted six months in advance before the arrival of the ships. The mafias use land that is located in remote and mountainous areas. These are reached by dirt roads, guarded by armed people. In 2015, on the Manta-Portoviejo highway, a clandestine runway was operated. It was asphalt and had an area of 300 meters.
In October of last year, this newspaper arrived at the site and verified how the land was being removed and there were fragments of pavement. By raising an illegal track and by renting a piece of land to hide the narcotics the international bands pay from USD 200 000.
The agents assure that to leave the land ready and pave, the pilots first come to the country, they analyze the temperature and the currents of air. This determines the feasibility of the work. Lara said that the track where the plane crashed on Sunday was badly built, because there were trees that prevented the flight. (I)