The Pilot Did It: Ecclestone's Helicopter Chauffeur Arrested in Kidnapping of F1 Chief's Mother-in-Law

Steph Willems
by Steph Willems
the pilot did it ecclestone s helicopter chauffeur arrested in kidnapping of f1

In old mystery novels, it’s usually the butler, gardener or maid that police nab for committing a dastardly crime. In 21st Century São Paulo, Brazil, it’s the helicopter pilot.

After rescuing Formula One boss Bernie Ecclestone’s mother-in-law from kidnappers earlier this week, Brazilian authorities arrested the racing tycoon’s pilot on suspicion of involvement, the BBC reports.

Jorge Eurico da Silva Faria was nabbed following the arrest of two kidnappers at an apartment in the nearby town of Cotia. Authorities allege that Silva Faria is the mastermind of the kidnapping.

Police staged a raid to rescue Aparecida Schunck, 67, the mother of Ecclestone’s wife Fabiana Flosi. Schunck, who lives in São Paulo, was snatched from her car and held for ransom for nine days. She was found tied up, but unharmed. The kidnappers demanded $36.5 million in British currency from Ecclestone, but didn’t receive a dime.

Authorities traced phone calls placed between the kidnappers and Schunk’s family to a home divided into five apartments. After viewing security camera footage, they pinpointed the apartment and entered the unit through a garage.

Brazilian media outlet Globo states that Silva Faria was president of the Brazilian Association of Helicopter Pilots until last year, and was in charge of Formula One helicopter operations in São Paulo until 2014.

[Image: Calflier001/ Flickr]

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7 of 19 comments
  • MrGrieves MrGrieves on Aug 03, 2016

    When your mother-in-law is 18 years younger than you are, you must be doing something right!

    • 5280thinair 5280thinair on Aug 03, 2016

      In this case "doing something right" means sucking all the profits out of the business you manage, leaving your business partners in a multi-billion-dollar-earning sport unable to make payroll. Bernie knows how to make money for himself, but it seems like everyone else involved (racetracks, promoters, governments who subsidise the races, and independent teams) gets left holding the bag.

  • Iamwho2k Iamwho2k on Aug 03, 2016

    Bernie is STILL going to turn around and extort a few more million from the Brazil Grand Prix people.

  • Mike1dog Mike1dog on Aug 03, 2016

    Seems like "mastermind" might be too strong a word to use for these guys. What kind of kidnapper uses a land line from the house you're holding your captive in to call in the ransom demand?

  • Roberto Esponja Roberto Esponja on Aug 04, 2016

    Christ, what a way to ruin your life. And to end up in a Brazilian prison. Yikes!