Sweden plane crash
A handout picture from the Norwegian Air Force shows the site of a plane crash in the Gallivare mountains in Sweden, 10 km (6 miles) from the Norwegian border Norsk Telegrambyra AS/Reuters

A cargo plane carrying mail crashed in northern Sweden shortly after sending a distress signal. A Norwegian F-16 is thought to have located the crash site and the wreckage.

The wreckage has been spotted at a location between the north-western part of Lake Akkajaure in Norway and Sweden's Lapland Mountains. Two pilots, both European nationals, aboard the Swedish-registered Canadair CRJ 200 are believed to have been killed.

The plane was flying from the Norwegian airport Gardermoen to Tromsø. Earlier, it was reported that the aircraft departed from London Heathrow but officials have since confirmed that it did not fly from Heathrow. The airlines said the plane was flown by a 42-year-old captain, a Spaniard, and a 34-year-old first officer, a French national. Both are believed to be seasoned pilots.

"What should not happen and may not happen has happened," Gustaf Thureborn, CEO of West Atlantic, the plane's operator, told reporters. The exact cause of the crash is not known as yet.
"In light of the ongoing investigation we can't give you more information about what has happened, but we'll have to await its results. We're happy to offer more information as soon as we have it," said Thureborn.

The aircraft sent out the distress signal when it was flying nearly 10km (6 miles) from the Norwegian border. Emergency teams which were dispatched to the crash site later said the pilots were presumed dead.