A dead body found on cash cargo plane refuelling in Zimbabwe
Crew of Florida-owned cargo plane arrested and millions of rand destined for South Africa’s Reserve Bank seized after Harare airport staff follow blood trails and find a body.
A cargo plane carrying millions of South African rand has been landed at Zimbabwe’s international airport after ground staff spotted blood dripping from it and discovered a man’s body.
The plane, owned by Florida-based Western Global Airlines, is understood to have been transporting large sums of cash from Munich in Germany via Belgium and Nigeria and was bound for the seaside town of Durban in South Africa when it stopped in Harare for refuelling.
“The jet crew was questioned and they said they hit a bird in the air. But then a search was made and the body of an adult male fell out,” a source told African News Agency.
A spokesman for the South African Reserve Bank suggested the body belonged to a “stowaway” and expressed the hope its money would be released soon.
Local reports said four crew members had been arrested: two Americans, a Pakistani and a South African. An airport source told The Telegraph that two couriers had remained on the plane since the discovery on Sunday, unwilling to leave its valuable cargo.
Images circulated on social media showed a charred body protruding from a flap on the outside of the aircraft. Officials with face masks stand to one side on a hydraulic platform and Zimbabwe Republic Police tape is visible. A Zimbabwean aviation source told The Telegraph the body fell out of the flap when security staff began searching for the source of the blood.Pradeep Maharaj, Group Executive for the South African Reserve Bank’scurrency operations, would not confirm whether SARB employees were on the craft.