Update: Our post (below) is based on Honduran news reports. A comment from MJZ (published below) calls into question the registration reported by the Honduran press. Also relevant is the comment by Kevin Porter who called into question the identification. We have removed the specific details about the registration identification made in the Honduran press. This does not mean that the general point we are making-- that older US planes are often making their way to Honduras in an afterlife as highly disposable drug planes-- is any different; simply that in this case, we do not know the registration, and cannot verify the origin of this plane.
Another American plane loaded with narcotics landed in Honduras yesterday. The plane landed near Limones at a dirt landing strip on someone's farm, a strip the owner reportedly thought he had disabled. It landed at night, with the strip lighted by a generator, and unloaded its drugs into waiting pickup trucks. The plane was then burned.
Sources differ about the registration of the plane. International sources, like Terra.com, report the plane was Venezuelan, while El Heraldo and others report it to be American. [Deleted information from Honduran news reports that has been contested.]
[Deleted discussion based on Honduran reports of registration.]
It was unusual that the Honduran military were not notified of this flight by the US radar operators from the Southern Command in Tampa, Fl. or by the US radar operators in Puerto Castillo. Under a joint agreement the US supplies radar sightings to the Honduran military, who then try to intercept and interdict the plane. This service was briefly interrupted last year when Honduran pilots twice shot down suspected drug planes in violation of their agreement with the US. After a brief closure, the service was reinstated after the Honduran military reluctantly agreed to reinforce the agreed-upon protocol with their pilots.
[Deleted final paragraph referring to the plane as of known US origin.]