Gold’s Gym owner Rainer Schaller, his family and two others are believed to be dead after a plane they were traveling in crashed Friday off the Caribbean coast of Costa Rica, authorities said.
Costa Rica’s Ministry of Public Security posted on Facebook Friday that a plane en route from Mexico to Limón, Costa Rica, lost contact with the control tower at Costa Rica’s Juan Santamaria International Airport around 6 p.m. local time (8 p.m. ET) while flying. in the northeastern area of Parismina in front of the Caribbean coast of the country.
The Ministry of Public Security gave CNN access to a copy of the flight manifest. Schaller, a German-born business magnate, along with four other German nationals and a pilot, were aboard the private flight on Friday, according to the manifest. Among the German nationals were Schaller’s partner, Christiane Schikorsky, and two minors.
According to Martin Arias, vice president of the Ministry of Public Security, the coast guard carried out a search operation in the Caribbean Sea from 5 a.m. local time this Saturday, and at 5:50 a.m. the remains of a plane 28 kilometers from Limón airport in Costa Rica.
Arias said the Red Cross has been asked to assist in search and rescue operations.
Costa Rica’s Public Security Minister Jorge Torres Carillo tweeted Saturday on his verified account that the private plane was carrying a “foreign crew” and that two bodies have been recovered.
The German Foreign Ministry told CNN that it is aware of the situation and that the German embassy in the Costa Rican capital of San Jose is in contact with local authorities for further clarification.
“The embassy is also ready to provide consular assistance to the families of those affected,” the German Foreign Ministry said.
Schaller is the founder and CEO of the RSG Group, which includes fitness studios McFit, John Reed and Gold’s Gym.