A mysterious aircraft has flown between the United States and both Venezuela and Colombia dozens of times over the last month, and Venezuelan authorities claim they discovered weapons and related accessories in one of the shipments this week.
The Miami Herald reported on the alleged arms shipment, which officials in Venezuela said came from a freight flight operated by 21 Air, LLC. The officials said the United States was behind the shipment, igniting suspicion the CIA could potentially be involved.
The Herald reported the Boeing 767 has traveled from Miami to both Valencia and Caracas, Venezuela and both Bogota and Medellin, Colombia dozens of times since Jan. 11.
Sometimes it would return to its base in Miami for just a few hours before returning to one of the South American cities with unknown cargo.
questsin tracked the plane's seven-day history, which revealed it made more than a dozen round trips from Miami to various South American cities during that time.
Venezuela is in chaos, with opposition leader Juan Guaidó claiming he is the acting president of the country. President Nicolás Maduro is still clinging to power.
The existence of the mysterious flights has sparked suspicion the CIA could be using the cargo plane, which can haul 42 tons, to send arms and related supplies to the opposition party on the ground.
According to the Herald, authorities in Venezuela found 19 assault weapons (including 15 AR-15 rifles), 118 ammunition cartridges, 90 military-grade radio antennas, and other items.
"This material was destined for criminal groups and terrorist actions in the country, financed by the fascist extreme right and the government of the United States," Bolivarian National Guard Gen. Endes Palencia Ortiz said, the Herald reported.
Steffan Watkins, who keeps tabs on suspect plane and ship movements, told the Herald the Boeing 767 in question recently changed its flight pattern.
"All year, they were flying between Philadelphia and Miami and all over the place, but all continental U.S.," he said. "Then all of a sudden in January, things changed."
The CIA has delivered arms shipments in the past to locations in southeast Asia, via its Air America airline, and Nicaragua.