Three crew feared dead in Japan military helicopter crash

TOKYO (AFP) - Japan's military said Friday that a search and rescue mission has found three crew presumed dead from a helicopter that went missing a day earlier.

A spokesman for the Maritime Self-Defence Force, Japan's navy, said they had no heartbeat, but a medical pronouncement of death was still to come.

The OH-6DA helicopter went missing in the southern region of Kyushu on Thursday morning.

It was later found in dense woods along with its crew, two of whom were experienced instructors in their 30s and 40s. The third was a trainee in his 20s who was learning aircraft navigation.

It was not immediately clear what caused the accident, but the crew had changed their flight plan in mid-air due to bad weather.