Argentina Guerra Sucia (Dirty War): 1976-1983 Death Flights
Three former Coast Guard pilots were charged Thursday over so-called death flights during the dictatorship era when drugged political prisoners were thrown from military planes into the Rio de la Plata estuary, court officials said. The indictment came during an investigation into crimes committed at the ESMA Naval Mechanics School from 1976 to 1983. About 5,000 people suspected of being leftist dissidents were held at the clandestine detention center. Many died during the secret death flights, and few bodies were recovered. Prosecutors think the three pilots may have flown the plane from which two French nuns were thrown in 1977 because the body of one was found on a beach several days after the flight was registered.