Investigators conclude missing jet hijacked, steered off course, official says | Fox NewsInvestigators trying to solve the disappearance of a Malaysia Airlines jetliner have concluded that one of the pilots or someone else with flying experience hijacked the missing Boeing 777 and steered it off course, according to a Malaysian government official.The official, who is involved in the investigation, told The Associated Press on Saturday that no motive has been established, and it is not yet clear where the plane was taken. The official spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to brief the media.
The official said that hijacking was no longer a theory. "It is conclusive," he said.
He said evidence that led to the conclusion were signs that the plane's communications were switched off deliberately, data about the flight path and indications the plane was steered in a way to avoid detection by radar.
The jet's communication with the ground was severed under one hour into a flight March 8 from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing. Malaysian officials have said radar data suggest it may have turned back and crossed back over the Malaysian peninsula westward, after setting out toward the Chinese capital.
Earlier, a senior U.S. official told Fox News that the search effort will broaden deep into the Indian Ocean, based on new intelligence assessments that there is a "higher probability" the aircraft went down in that region.
As a consequence of shared U.S.-Malaysian intelligence assessments, it is understood that the U.S. Navy destroyer USS Kidd will expand its search into a southern quadrant of the ocean, while Indian authorities will cover a northern quadrant.
The development comes as authorities speculate that the disappearance may have been an "act of piracy,” and more evidence suggests the plane was diverted by a skilled pilot before it vanished, U.S. and Malaysian officials familiar with the investigation said Friday
The mystery continues...