(NEW YORK) — Mexican officials have confirmed the disappearance of a private jet carrying regional Mexican music superstar Jenni Rivera that took off from the northern Mexican city of Monterrey at 3:15 a.m. local time on Sunday and fell off the radar 10 minutes (or 62 miles) after take-off.
The Learjet 25 jet is believed to have been carrying seven people – five passengers and two pilots. It was headed for Toluca International Aiport, located outside of Mexico City, where it was meant to arrive at 4:40 a.m. An official search for the jet was initiated at sunrise.
Rivera’s publicist Arturo Rivera is believed to have been on that flight. His most recent tweets are of photos from Rivera’s concert in Monterrey on Saturday night.
The Mexican American singer’s most recent tweet is a re-tweet of what appears to be a fan’s message.
Rivera was due in Toluca this evening for the taping of a Mexican TV show, La Voz.
Known as La Diva de la Banda and beloved by fans on both sides of the border, Rivera, 43, has had a groundbreaking career in regional Mexican music, selling some 15 million records. Among her many feats in a male-dominated genre, she made history in September 2011 when she sold out the Staples Center in Los Angeles, the first female regional Mexican artist to do so. Her reality show on mun2, I Love Jenni, is one of the network’s highest rated shows. Rivera made her film debut at the 2012 Sundance Film Festival in the indie family drama Filly Brown, due in theaters in January 2013.
The Long Beach, Calif.-born singer’s personal life has often called for as much attention as her career. A mother of five, Rivera had filed for divorce from baseball player Esteban Loaiza in October after two years of marriage, citing “irreconcilable differences.” Soon after, rumors of an affair between Loaiza and Rivera’s own daughter Chiquis surfaced, which Chiquis addressed on Twitter in October by saying, “I would NEVER do that, Ever! That’s a horrible accusation.”
The search for Rivera’s jet continues. This is a developing story.
Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio
Michael Pearson, Faith Karimi and Ian Lee, CNN
Holly Yan, David Williams and Steve Almasy, CNN