Peter Jackson's jet used in MH370 search

Sir Peter Jackson's personal Gulfstream jet is being used in the search for the missing Malaysian passenger jet, according to Radio New Zealand.

Radio New Zealand producer Kate Chapman said Sir Peter had personally given the okay for the jet to be used in the search.

Sir Peter's staff had earlier declined to comment to the Herald and APNZ that the jet was being used to search for MH370, which went missing on March 8 with 239 people aboard.

Australian authorities co-ordinating the search had also previously declined to comment on whether the Lord of the Rings' and Hobbit director's jet was being used.

Inquiries were made after a list of participating countries and what resources they providing revealed a New Zealand military plane and a New Zealand civilian plane were taking part in the search.

Chapman said this morning that Radio New Zealand had received a tip that the civilian aircraft involved in the search was Sir Peter's.

After initially denying that it was his, a spokesman for Sir Peter later confirmed the jet had been chartered to Australian authorities.

The jet was not donated to help in the search effort, rather the company which operated the jet had accepted a charter offer with Sir Peter's permission, Chapman said.

The jet was being used to relay messages between different points, facilitating communication between others involved in the search, she said.

Sir Peter bought the jet last March for around $80 million. It is managed by charter service Execujet and is based in Wellington.

Gulfstream describes the G650 on its website as an "ultra-high-speed, ultra-long-range business jet" and as the "gold standard in business aviation".

"The flagship of the Gulfstream fleet flies faster, farther, and more comfortably than any other business aircraft in its class."

The jet can carry eight passengers and a crew of four on nonstop legs more than 12,000km.


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