The bodies of a
Brazilian congressman and three other men were found Sunday, one
day after their airplane simply disappeared. Their single-engine
aircraft crashed in dense jungle, just 15 minutes after
President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva said he felt "deep sorrow"
at the death of Rep. Jose Carlos Martinez, who was serving his
fourth term as a Brazilian legislator. The loss was all the more
personal for Lula de Silva -- Martinez was also president of the
Brazilian Labor Party, part of the governing coalition.
The still-unidentified type aircraft had taken off Saturday from
an airport about 220 miles southwest of Sao Paulo. About 15 minutes
afterwards, radar controllers said it simply vanished from their
Defense Minister Jose Viegas said the pilot on board had not
filed a flight plan of any type. "This episode should serve as an
example so that no one repeats the mistakes so often made by
private pilots, of going out adventurously, without a flight plan
or any type of coordination," Viegas said in an interview with
The Brazilian Air Force is handling the investigation. A
determination on the cause of the crash should be made within about
90 days, according to Air Force officials.