Thursday, 14 April 2022

Airline crew locked up in Dom Rep......

Canadian charter carrier Pivot Airlines had an entire crew detained by the police in the Dominican Republic last week after they reported a large consignment of cocaine had been found on an aircraft.

The Dominican Republic’s National Drug Control Directorate (DNCD) confirmed eight packages, which each contained 25 smaller packages of cocaine with a total weight of 200 kgs were discovered in some of the aircraft’s control compartments following an in-depth search. The estimated value of the drugs was just over £19 million according to local law enforcement.

The aircraft had arrived at the popular holiday airport on 31 March and was scheduled to fly back to Canada and Toronto Airport.

According to reports, the crew found the contraband in a maintenance compartment that contained critical electrical equipment and they then reported it to both the local police and the Royal Canadian Mounted Police.  Pivot Airlines said the crew – comprising of a captain, first officer,  two cabin crew and a  maintenance engineer, had been detained in Dom Rep but didn’t divulge their identities.

In a statement the airline praised the crew's actions, saying they “averted a likely air disaster that could have been caused by the extra weight and the flammable packages being close to electrical equipment”.

The crew have remained in detention whilst local officials carry out an investigation into the incident which could last up to a year without charge. The airline, which only started operations in 2021 and is owned by Binder Capital Corporation, a private equity firm based in Calgary, Alberta said it was concerned for the welfare of its staff: “They do not speak the language, have been identified as reporting the contraband to authorities and fear for their safety. We are deeply concerned for the safety, security and ethical and humane treatment of our crew,”

According to the local media, the DNCD detained eleven people, including the five from Pivot and the men are being held in communal cells alongside accused drug criminals.

Local law enforcement has said an extensive investigation process has been initiated and the Public Ministry, assisted by DNCD agents, were working hard to “clearly establish who is directly linked to the seizure of the substance.”







Follow this site here.



No comments: