While a mysterious text message sent late Sunday night sparked talk of foul play in the disappearance of Vittorio Missoni, chief executive of the Missoni fashion house, off the coast of Venezuela, new reports indicate that the country’s authorities have dismissed the possibility of a kidnapping in their search efforts.
The Italian businessman was flying from Los Roques to Caracas on Friday with his companion Maurizia Castiglioni, two other passengers, and two crew members when the plane went off the radar. Though the area in which the aircraft was flying over is known for drug smuggling, WWD cites a spokesman from the Interior Ministry, who affirms that they are not working” with the “possibility of a kidnapping.”
Yesterday, Ottavio’s sister Angela, creative director of the brand, expressed hope that her brother may still be alive as the victim of a kidnapping, rather than a crash, after a text message was sent from one of his fellow passengers cell phones one evening prior. Angela also released a full length statement detailing the progress of the search:
I am now in Rome and in direct contact with the Italian Foreign Ministry and the State Police to report the disappearance of my brother while also co-ordinating all information and offers of aid that we have received globally.
My brother Luca is now in Venezuela and is an active part of the search. He is a pilot and is also involved in the flight search over the area. Our AD, Alberto Piantoni, has just joined Luca in Venezuela. They are in direct touch with the Venezuelan authorities, the Unity of Crisis and the Italian Embassy.
My children and nephews are all with my parents and are together at this difficult time.
We are all moved by the affection and help that we have had from the whole world and thankful to the Authorities for their tireless search and rescue efforts.
At this time, we have no further specifics regarding the search except to say we are confident they will continue at the same pace and the search with explore all possibilities. Our deepest thanks go to the multitude of supporters that have reached out to us from all over the world. We ask that you join us in the hope that the Missoni, Scalvenzi and Foresti families will soon be reunited.
We are full of hope and trust the great work the Authorities have been doing so far. We will not give up.