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Thief lands stolen plane on South African highway

By adminon - Read 1428 times

A South African thief who stole a plane for a joyride had to land on a motorway when it ran out of fuel. He made the emergency landing on the N4 highway near Bronkhorstspruit, about 30 miles from Pretoria.

Police say the aircraft was undamaged and the thief got away before he could be arrested.

"We have no idea who the suspect is," police spokesman Capt. Piletji Sebola said.

There was no apparent damage to the plane and there appeared to have been few cars on the road when it landed. One of the highway's two lanes was closed to traffic, Sebola said.

The Cessna, used for skydiving, had been brought into Wonderboom airport in Pretoria on Sunday for a routine maintenance.

The plane was stolen sometime Monday night or Tuesday morning.

According to the flight instruments, it was flown for roughly one hour and 36 minutes before it ran out of fuel and was forced into an emergency landing.

"I'm dumbstruck. He really knew what he was doing," said Carlos Garcia Cabral, the plane's owner.

Police and airport officials were investigating how the plane was stolen.

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