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Plane of missing singer likely found in Mexico

By CNN Staff
updated 11:15 PM EST, Sun December 9, 2012
The plane Jenni Rivera was flying in took off from Monterrey, Mexico, on Sunday morning, officials say.
The plane Jenni Rivera was flying in took off from Monterrey, Mexico, on Sunday morning, officials say.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Officials say they found the wreckage of a plane believed to have been carrying Rivera
  • "Everything points to that this is the plane," says the transportation minister
  • Besides Rivera, two pilots and four other passengers were on board
  • The plane lost contact with air traffic controllers outside Monterrey, Mexico

Mexico City (CNN) -- Mexican authorities said Sunday they found the wreckage of a small plane that they believe was carrying Mexican-American singer Jenni Rivera.

Six others, including two pilots, were also thought to be on board the plane, which took off from Monterrey, Mexico, earlier in the day and soon lost contact with air traffic controllers.

Mexican singer's plane missing

"Everything points to that this is the plane," Communication and Transportation Minister Gerardo Ruiz Esparza told CNN affiliate Foro TV, about a wreckage site in the northern state of Nuevo Leon.

His ministry issued a statement saying authorities were working to access the site by land in order to confirm exactly what's there.

Alejandro Argudin, director general of Civil Aviation, said he believes no one on board survived the crash. "The aircraft was destroyed, totally fragmented," he told CNN affiliate Televisa.

Born in Long Beach, California, to Mexican immigrant parents, Rivera, 43, released her debut album in 1999, according to her website. She sings traditional Mexican ballads, and was nominated for a Latin Grammy Award in 2002 in the category of "Best Banda Album."

In October, People en Espanol named Rivera to its list of the 25 most powerful women.

Famous for her music, she is also known for her tumultuous personal life. The singer was a single mom at the age of 15 and is the mother of five, her website said.

Rivera's "I Love Jenni" reality show began airing on Telemundo's mun2 network last year.

She is a judge on the popular TV show, "The Voice, Mexico," which was scheduled to air Sunday night. Noting its concern for Rivera, Televisa said it would air a special report on the singer instead.

A fellow judge on the show took to Twitter following news of Rivera's disappearance.

"My heart is devastated," wrote Beto Cuevas. "All my prayers are with you, Jenni, and your family."

The private LearJet took off from Monterrey at 3:15 a.m. and lost contact with air traffic controllers about 60 miles away, according to a statement from the transportation ministry. The singer had a concert in the northern Mexican city Saturday night.

Two helicopters assisted in the search for the plane, which had as its destination the airport in Toluca, near Mexico City. The cause of the suspected crash was not immediately clear, and the ministry has opened an investigation.

Read more on CNN Mexico

CNNMexico.com contributed to this report.

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