Co-Pilot Killed, 4 Hurt in Hijacking in Brazil; Gunman Captured by Police
Police shot and wounded an armed hijacker Thursday as he tried to board a getaway plane with a hostage in central Brazil, ending a daylong ordeal that left one person dead and four injured, officials said.
The co-pilot of the jet was killed by the hijacker and three other crew members injured, authorities said. The rest of the passengers and crew on the VASP domestic airline jet were released unharmed. Authorities described the hijacker as mentally disturbed.
The hijacker, holding a revolver and taking the jet’s pilot with him, descended from the Boeing 737 parked on the runway at Goiania, 850 miles northwest of Rio de Janeiro. He had demanded to talk to President Jose Sarney about the country’s economic policies, which he thought were wrong, and a small plane was to take him and the pilot to Brasilia, the capital. Earlier, the government refused to allow the jetliner to land in Brasilia.
“Police shot at him as he left the plane, and he turned around and shot the Boeing pilot, whom he had taken as his only hostage,” air force spokesman Col. Eden Avolinsque said. “He ran off into the bushes, and police following close behind shot . . . him.”
The pilot was wounded in the leg. The hijacker was captured.