‘Wealthy Romanian property developer among eight dead in Milan plane crash’

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Watch: Milan plane crash - All eight people on board reported dead after tragedy near subway station

A wealthy property developer has been reported as one of the victims of a plane crash in Milan.

Eight people are believed to have died when a small, private plane crashed into an empty two-story office building in a Milan suburb on Sunday.

Milan Prosecutor Tiziana Siciliano is said to have told reporters at the scene all those on the plane were foreign, including the pilot.

Italy’s RaiNews reported one victim was Dan Petrescu, 68, a major real estate developer who was described by the outlet as “one of the richest men in Romania.”

RaiNews suggested he was piloting the plane - which was registered in Romania - at the time of the crash.

It reported his son Dan Stefan Petrescu, 30, and wife, 65, also died in the crash along with five unidentified people including a young boy.

Investigators have since opened a probe in to what caused the plane to crash just 11 minutes after takeoff from Milan’s Linate Airport.

Carabinieri officers stand on the site of a plane crash, in San Donato (AP)
Carabinieri officers stand on the site of a plane crash, in San Donato (AP)

The plane was en route to Olbia Airport on the island of Sardinia. It is thought the group may have been heading towards Sardinia to visit family.

The LaPresse news agency initially quoted firefighters at the scene saying the pilot, co-pilot and five passengers aboard were killed.

But later LaPresse and other media said there were eight people aboard the flight.

Firefighters tweeted that no one other than those aboard were involved in the early afternoon crash near a subway station in San Donato Milanese, a small town near Milan.

They said several cars in a nearby parking lot were set ablaze, but apparently the vehicles were unoccupied at the time.

A thick column of dark smoke rose from the crash site and was visible for miles.

Firefighters were extinguishing the flames of the now-charred building, which reportedly was under renovation.

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