Air Serbia flight from the Lebanese capital Beirut was carrying two guided Hellfire missiles. This flight was going to a remote area in Portland, Oregon. At Nikola Tesla Airport in Belgrade,the plane was to transfer cargo and passengers to another flight. That’s when the missiles were discovered by bomb-sniffing dogs. The missiles were 5 foot long and weigh about 100 lbs. each. They were packed in a wooden crate.
“Experts are determining whether the missiles were equipped with live or training warheads. They were packed in proper transportation crates and supplied with paperwork which is also being scrutinized,” the source said.
With all the security measures taken while traveling by air, how in the world did these hellfire missiles get by in the first place?
The AGM 114 Hellfire, is an air-to-surface missile(ASM) which can be used against armored vehicles and tanks, but also for precision strikes against other targets. These can be used without an explosive warhead when used as a practice weapon. It carries a spotting charge instead or has an inert rocket motor and warhead.
They use these kind of missiles in sea, land and air. They can be installed in helicopters, armored vehicles and planes. They cost $110,000 and can travel a 5 mile distance. Many are used on Drones and are laser-guided.
The Lebanese army was utilizing these missiles in training and they were sending them back to the United States according to a Lebanese security source.
Serbian military officials state that “in no way were those types of missiles ever to be transported on a passenger jet.” They took both missiles and are investigating this matter. Although military planes come and go at this airport, they do not permit these kinds of artillery to be transported via passenger plane.
(H/T) Huffington post