German fitness mogul believed to be among 6 killed in plane crash off Costa Rica – KIRO 7 News Seattle

SAN JOSE, Costa Rica — The wreckage of a plane reportedly carrying German businessman Rainer Schaller was found off the coast of Costa Rica, authorities said Saturday.

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A flight plan filed for the small, charter plane listed Schaller, 53, as a passenger, The Associated Press reported. A man by the same name operates international chains of fitness and gym outlets, including Gold’s Gym and McFit.

The tycoon is the founder and CEO of the RSG Group, which includes the McFit and Gold’s Gym fitness outlets.

All five passengers are believed to be German citizens, Jorge Torres, Costa Rica’s security minister, told the AP. The plane’s pilot was Swiss.

According to the German newspaper Bild, Schaller’s partner, Christiane Schikorsky, and their children were reportedly the other passengers on board the aircraft, Fox News reported.

The small Piaggio 180 private aircraft was first reported missing on Friday en route to Costa Rica from Mexico, Bild reported. The aircraft lost communication just under three hours after departing from the Mexican city of Palenque, according to the newspaper.

Martín Arias, Costa Rica’s assistant security minister, said no bodies had been located at the crash site, which is 17 miles off the coast and near the Limon airport.

“Pieces have been found that indicate that this is the aircraft,” Arias told the AP. “Up to now, we have not found any bodies dead or alive.”

McFit spokesperson Jeanine Minaty said the company did not have any other information, according to German international broadcaster Deutsche Welle.

In 2010, Schaller was the organizer

Rainer Schaller was in the news in 2010 for his role as organizer of the Berlin Love Parade techno festival. A crush at the event killed 21 people and injured more than 500. Authorities at the time said Schaller’s security failed to stop the flow of people into a tunnel when the situation was already tense at the entrance to the festival grounds.

Schaller fought back against the accusations of wrongdoing, noting that his security concept received official city approval.

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