I have a strong personal interest in this case:
And would love to be alerted to any more news as it dribbles out, please.
There is a thread running in the “Private Flying” section on PPRuNe since some time. Among other things there is the callsign (N101VV) of the aeroplane used for the operation.
The funny thing is that I, as pilot in command, am threatened with a fine of 3500 Euros for every passenger I fly into France without a valid passport. So flying people without passport out of France should actually be honored with a gratification of 3500 Euros…
Seven people in a C172?!
No useful info in the other place which is probably why Timothy is asking. I wonder why he is asking?
It would be hilarious if these passengers booked the flight via a flight sharing site
Seven people in a C172?!
Some of them were children/infants allegedly. And I have seen three adults flying inside a C152 on one occasion, so 7 in a 172 should be no problem.
A bit sad to say, but for smulling, cocaine is much higher value per weight or volume than immigrants. Might also be lower profile.
On the bright side with immigrants you’re less likely to have to have drug dealers know you and hold you by the …. after you completed your first mission for them.
Anybody who does this is really stupid because a GA plane sticks out in a very obvious manner, plus the passengers are likely to be under surveillance, not to mention telling all their mates on facebook/whatsapp where they are going when and how each group that comes across will be largely uninterested in preserving the method for the next lot.
…each group that comes across will be largely uninterested in preserving the method for the next lot.
Of course we don’t know (yet) how many successful trips he did before getting caught. I saw some figures in the press on the amounts paid by refugees for being taken onboard inflatable boats, and if Cessna 172 seats pay anywhere close, then his little house may already be paid for. The French authorities must not have been too eager to catch him either, because every refugee he flies to the UK is one problem less for them…
My only interest is that I fly into Calais very often and can just see Immigration being deprecated from there.
What is puzzling is that when you are loading up several obviously middle-East people into a plane at some airport, many people will see you do it. This is why dodgy flights have been done between grass fields, within a flight ostensibly starting and ending at proper airports. But even that is very risky because the countryside is full of people with smartphones, especially the sort of open areas where a plane can land and take off.