Missoni Pilot Was Licensed to Fly

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Photo: Vittorio Zunino Celotto/Getty Images

Contrary to earlier reports, the pilot of the BN2 Islander carrying Vittorio Missoni, which disappeared near Los Roques on January 4, had passed his mental and physical fitness tests and was licensed to fly until May 30, 2013, La Repubblica writes. After ANSV, Italy's agency for flight security, said that 72-year-old Germán Marchan's flying license expired last November 30, Venezuelan authorities consulted the local Civil Aviation Authority (INAC) and the Institute of Aviation Medicine of Venezuela, the Italian paper explains in a new article. However, there's no update on the airline itself, which supposedly does "not yet have [a] regular air operator's certificate."

There's little news coming out of Venezuela, where search crews believe the plane sank, but the Daily Beast makes note of more "cell phone anomalies." Two days after the aircraft disappeared, the son of Guido Foresti (one of the five others in the plane with Missoni) received a text message from his father reading, "Call now, we are reachable," but he couldn't get in touch.

A day later, calls to Foresti's wife's phone rang 10 times before automatically transferring through to the phone's answering service, indicating that her phone was also momentarily on or back in cell-tower range. According to several Italian newspapers, a list of calls registered by the local Venezuelan telephone carrier the Italians' phones were roaming through showed that both the Foresti phones made a series of calls at noon on Jan. 4, several hours after the plane disappeared.

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