Correction: The two aircraft N379P and N313P that are confirmed to have transported prisoners for the CIA have not been stationed in North Carolina since 2006. That year, the planes were both re-registered and sold off to other owners, presumably for purposes unrelated to the extraordinary rendition program. A former version of this article said Weissman said crews would leave from Johnston County airport and take people into custody abroad without formal charges, pilots would actually fly from the Johnston County Airport or the Kinston Global TransPark, very often to Dulles Airport, where they would pick up the rendition, and then onward to the location where the detainee would be tortured by the rendition team, not by the pilots. The article has been changed to reflect the correction. The Daily Tar Heel apologizes for the error.
The North Carolina Commission of Inquiry on Torture will hold a public hearing Nov. 30 and Dec. 1 to explore North Carolina’s role in supporting the Central Intelligence Agency’s Detention and Interrogation Program, according to a press release by the commission.
Commissioners will hear testimony on the CIA’s program which, through the company Aero Contractors Ltd., used North Carolina airports as staging grounds for extraordinary renditions in which flights detained suspected terrorists abroad and transported them to CIA “black sites” and third-party countries, where they were illegally detained and tortured, according to the NCCIT website.
According to the press release, more than 40 cases involving North Carolina-based jets and pilots have been documented. Many of these cases appear in the 2014 declassified summary of the U.S. Senate Intelligence Committee’s report on CIA torture.
Christina Cowger, a member of the commission's board of directors, said the 12-year history behind the non-partisan commission began due to the lack of response North Carolinians received when pressuring officials about the state’s involvement.