British police ID body that fell out of jet

LONDON — The macabre mystery surrounding a man whose body fell from a plane onto a suburban London street in September has been partially solved.

Police said Thursday they have finally identified the man as Jose Matada and determined that he was originally from the African nation of Mozambique.

But they have not been able to locate his family or to repatriate his body despite receiving assistance from authorities in that country.


Matada’s crumpled body was found on a street in the quiet west London suburb of Mortlake early on the morning of Sept. 9.

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Police thought at first he was a murder victim, but soon determined his lifeless body had fallen from a plane preparing to land at nearby Heathrow Airport.

They believed he might be from the African country of Angola because he had currency from that country in his jeans and because a jet from Angola had been passing overhead at the time. Some members of London’s Angolan community came to the spot where he landed shortly after his death to place flowers and pray for him.

But efforts to identify him with the help of Angolan officials failed.

Detectives next called phone numbers on a SIM card found inside his jeans and eventually got information on his identity and origins.