Angola 727 Disappearance
A man named Keith Urwin bought this 727-200 from American Airlines, paying $250,000 with $750,000 to be paid within 1 month, a total of $1,000,000. The plane was planned to collect oil for diamond mines in Angola, but then the company pulled out of the deal. Whilst searching for a job involving the plane, all the crew had returned back to the US, leaving the plane to be operated by an all-Angolan crew.
After not receiving their payments, American Airlines sent Ben Padilla to bring the plane home. The issue was, the airplane had been idle for years, with over $3,000,000 in fines owed to the airport. Ben Padilla hired a local mechanic crew to fix up the plane, and that’s where our story starts…
At 5PM Local time on May 25, 2003, Ben Padilla and mechanic, John M. Mutantu Boarded the aircraft and took off without contacting ATC. They never returned…
One main issue with the situation was that neither man was trained to fly the 727, where they needed three trained crew to operate. Padilla’s sister, Benita Padilla-Kirkland, told the South Florida Sun-Sentinel newspaper in 2004 that her family suspected that he was flying the aircraft and feared that he subsequently crashed somewhere in Africa or was being held against his will. In July 2003 a possible sighting of the missing aircraft was reported in Conakry and subsequently conclusively dismissed by the United States Department of State.
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I have drafted up a topic on the D.B. Cooper, Northwest 310 Case, do you think I should post it?