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full report: "United States of America - Below the radar: Secret flights to torture and ‘disappearance’" [see in particular section 2: Planes and airports – the support network for rendition flights]

Author: Amnesty International, Published on: 5 April 2006

CIA-front companies...The CIA rendition programme has relied on private planes contracted from companies listed as private air charter services. In some cases, these are CIA front companies that exist only on paper. [raises concerns about alleged involvement by: Southern Air, Kalitta Air, Evergreen International Airways, Tepper Aviation, Premier Executive Transport, Stevens Express Leasing, Devon Holding, Keeler and Tate Management, Bayard Foreign Marketing, Aero Contractors, Pegasus Technologies, Richmor Aviation] It is...the case that the number of flights carried out by the planes identified for monitoring in this report have fallen over the last year. This does not necessarily indicate that renditions are not being carried out, but that companies and aircraft previously involved in the programme are being replaced, making the rendition programme increasingly difficult to monitor...
Companies and aircraft...Amnesty International and TransArms have compiled a list of companies likely to have had some level of involvement in renditions and other covert operations. This includes the owners or operators of aircraft that have been detected in known cases of rendition or in other CIA operations, as well as some of the companies – believed to be intelligence-linked – that are mentioned in both the US Army Aeronautical Service Agency’s worldwide landing permits and in US DoD fuelling contracts...[An indication of] a shifting landscape in the world of front companies is the current list of companies with a Civil Aircraft Landing Permit (CALP) that authorizes them to land on US military bases worldwide. The 10 companies that currently hold such certificates are listed below, but equally important are those that are no longer listed. Notably absent from the 2006 list are some of the companies with the most widely and frequently reported rendition links: Aeromet, Inc; Devon Holding and Leasing, Inc; Premier Executive Transport Services, Inc; Rapid Air Trans; Raython Aircraft Company; Richmor Aviation, Inc; Stevens Express Leasing, Inc; and Tepper Aviation, Inc. The permits of all of these companies expired in 2005 and none has been renewed...[List of private companies with current permits to land in US military bases worldwide: Centurion Aviation Services, Evergreen International Airlines, Falcon Air Express, Gemini Air Cargo, Omni Air International, Orbital Sciences Corporation, Phoenix Air Group, Polar Air Cargo, Ryan International Airlines, Southern Air. List of companies & aircraft linked to rendition flights in press & parliamentary reports: Aero Contractors, Apache Aviation, Aviation Specialities, Bayard Foreign Marketing, Braxton MNG/Centurion Aviation Services, Devon Holding/Aero Contractors, Gemini Leasing, Imperial Air, Keeler & Tate, Mark J. Gordon, Pegasus Technologies, Phoenix Aviation Group, Premier Executive Transport Services, Rapid Air Trans/Tepper Aviation, Richmor Aviation – Assembly Point, S&K Aviation, Stevens Express Leasing]

Read the full post here

Related companies: Aero Contractors Southern Air