Date & Time: Aug 1, 2020
Puerto Plata – Santa Cruz de Barahona
Crew on board:
Pax on board:
The twin engine aircraft departed Puerto Plata-Gregorio Luperón Airport at 1718LT on a flight to Santa Cruz de Barahona. En route, the pilot was informed that this airport is closed to all traffic after 1700LT and decided to return to Puerto Plata. A last radio communication was recorded with ATC when the aircraft disappeared from radar screens eight minutes later. Dominican authorities thought the aircraft may have crashed in the septentrional mountain range and SAR operations were initiated. Few hours later, the wreckage was found in a marshy area of the Lake Maracaibo, more than 1,000 km south of Puerto Plata. All three occupants were found alive and arrested while the aircraft was damaged beyond repair. Venezuelan authorities reported the aircraft and its occupants were engaged in an illegal narcotic flight.