HTML Button Generator

*Use browser’s “back button” to return to filtered results.

Never Quit Looking

*Images related to unsolved cases or unidentified remains may be graphic or otherwise distressing. They may contain postmortem images, particularly in the case of unidentified persons. Use extreme caution before viewing links.

Personal Information

Given Name
John Mikel
Alternative Name
Photo After Aging (Age Progression)


Date of Birth
Age Group
Age as of Today
Hair Color
Eye Color
Height (ft'in")
Height (cm)
Height Range
Weight (lbs)
Weight (kg)
Weight Range in Pounds
African or Black
Languages Spoken
Distinguishing Characteristics
Photo of Distinguishing Feature
Physical Abnormality
Tattoo Location
Tattoo Theme
Tattoo Subject
Scars & Other Marks
Shoe Size


Clothing (Key Word)
Clothing (Full Description)
Possessions / Accessories
Photo of Clothing or Accessories


Quatro Fevereiro Airport
Province or State
Postal Code


Date of Disappearance
May 25, 2003
Ben Padilla and John Mutantu were employees working on a Boeing 727 (registration #N844AA) when it mysteriously took off from the tarmac with the two men on board. The plane was an older model that had been used by American Airlines for a quarter of a century before being purchased for private use. At the time of its disappearance, the plane was owned by American Maury Joseph (president of Aerospace Sales & Leasing), who had suffered a setback with a local businessman who had been leasing the plane but failed to make the payments. Joseph had decided to sell the plan on to IRS Airlines, a Nigerian company but by the time Ben was brought on as a mechanic / manager, the plane had been stranded for more than a year and was facing millions in fees at Luanda’s Quatro Fevereiro Airport. The crew had abandoned the plane and eventually Joseph hired Ben to manage the repairs and hire a crew to fly the plane to South Africa once authorization was given. Ben was an experienced and licensed flight mechanic from Florida, and he was working with Air Gemini at the time. Although, Ben was a licensed pilot, he had never flown a plane as large as the Boeing 727 and was not authorized to do so. He could however hire others to fly it, and so began his search for the minimally required three persons necessary to manage the aircraft. Two weeks prior to its planned trip to South Africa, Ben had hired pilots and was making plans to run through the final tests to ensure the plane was operational. Joseph visited the airport to verify everything was working and authorized Ben to pay approximately $43,000 to the airport. On the evening of May 25, 2003, between 5:00pm – 6:00pm (17:00 – 18:00), the Boeing 727 unexpectedly began taxing down the runway. The control tower had not been informed and was not able to contact the plane through radios. The plane appeared to be moving in a chaotic manner and the lights and transponders remained off when it suddenly lifted and took off. It headed towards Berkina Faso and the was one final contact when an unknown person spoke over the radio requesting authorization to land in the Seychelles. The plane never arrived and neither John Mutanu (a local mechanic working on the plane at the time) nor Ben were ever found. To anyone’s knowledge, the plane did not have enough men on board to successfully take off nor was anyone licensed to do so. If there were other persons on board, it was not authorized or known to authorities. It contained an estimated 14,0000gal (53,000 litres) of fuel which would allow the plane to travel approximately 1,490mi (2,400km)
Location of the Disappearance or Crime Scene
Potential Circumstances
Carjacking, Foreign Resident, Isolated Location, Multiple Persons Abducted, Multiple Victims, Wild Outdoors
Boeing 727 (200 Series). It was silver with red,white, and blue stripes on the side.
License Plate
Tail Number #N844AA; Serial # 20985
Photo of Vehicle
Suspect Description
Photo of Suspect

Recovered Remains

Date of Recovery
Time of Death
Cause of Death
Description of Recovery
Recovery of Remains
Tested Against (No Match)

Further Details

In-Depth Case Overview:
Map of Key Locations
Relevant Media
See Also
Ben Charles Padilla, Jr. (Case #2387)
Notice URL
Other Photos
Case File Photos

Contact Police

Contact Agency
Polícia Nacional de Angola
Contact Police (Email)
Contact Police (Phone)
(222) 393 978
Contact Police (Local)
Contact Police (Website)
Alternative Contact

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.