Plane crashes in Paraguay, killing all 5 on board

ASUNCION, Paraguay (AP) -- Officials say a small plane crashed shortly after takeoff in the Paraguayan capital, killing all five people on board.

Civil Aviation Director Hugo Aquino says the two-engine Cessna went down in an open field just over a mile (about two kilometers) from Asuncion's international airport. The cause of the crash is unknown, but witnesses saw the plane explode in mid-air.

The pilot, co-pilot and three women on board were killed in Friday's crash.

The plane belonged to the private hospital Asismed and was used to transport patients. But hospital President Miguel Figueredo said the pilot had said he would be conducting a test flight, and did not tell officials he would have passengers.

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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