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The investigation into the plane crash that led to the death of Latin American pop superstar Jenni Rivera continues as Mexican authorities continue to learn more information about the tragedy.
Rivera and the other passengers of a small Learjet 25 died Sunday when the plane crashed minutes after it took off in Monterey, where she had just performed. Although she was initially reported missing, Mexican authorities later confirmed her death when her remains were discovered. CNN reports that her remains were turned over to her family today.
According to The Los Angeles Times, Mexican authorities now say that the plane nose-dived 28,000 feet in 30 seconds. When it crashed, the remains of the passengers were spread across the mountains.
Authorities haven’t said if they blame the crash on pilot error or maintenance failure, but their attention has turned to Starwood Management LLC, a Las Vegas company that owned the 43-year-old plane. According to federal documents obtained by the LA Times, Starwood executive Christian E. Esquino Nunez was accused of falsifying documents about its planes in the 1990s and 2000s. Authorities said that his “fraudulent business practices ... put the flying public at risk.”
Esquino was prosecuted in 2005 and spent two years in prison.
“We're all grieving,” he told the LA Times. “I'm definitely very sorry that this happened.” He also defended his decision to put a 78-year-old pilot behind the controls, another move that has been scrutinized.
Meanwhile, Perez Hilton is reporting that Esquino claims that Rivera planned on buying the plane for $250,000.
TMZ is also reporting that two Mexican police officers were arrested today for stealing from the crash site. Their houses were searched and cops found items belonging to the victims.