A senior NZ-born aviation figure says it's time the Australian Transport Safety Bureau abandoned its version of events surrounding the disappearance of Malaysia Airlines flight MH370.
Captain Mike Keane, a former chief pilot of Britain's largest airline EasyJet, claims the ATSB is complicit to a crime if it sticks to its "ghost flight" theory that the Boeing 777 was on autopilot and the pilots were incapacitated when it crashed.
The mysterious route taken by the doomed flight before the plane vanished with 239 passengers on-board has been re-examined by several aviation experts who all claim to have made chilling new discoveries.
For more than four years the world has grappled with questions over how the airliner vanished into thin air en route to Beijing from Kuala Lumpur.
Experts believe MH370 was used in a murder-suicide mission by Captain Zaharie Ahmad Shah.
Captain Keane, who was born in New Zealand and was a navigator in the Royal New Zealand Air Force and later a fighter pilot and intelligence officer in Britain's Royal Air Force, told The Australian the ATSB should now publicly admit the captain hijacked his own aircraft, flew it until it crashed and abandoned it outside the bureau's search area so it could not be found.
The ATSB did not respond to the claims when approached by news.com.au.
It said the claims were a matter for the Australian Government's Joint Agency Coordination Centre (JACC) which is responsible for co-ordinating whole-of-government information in relation to the search of MH370.
Former senior investigator with the Transportation Safety Board of Canada, Larry Vance, this week unveiled a new book MH370: Mystery Solved, and said the pilot "was killing himself" and took the aircraft to the most remote place possible so it would "disappear".
In an edited extract of the book published in The Australian this week, Vance said the simplicity of the disappearance came down to two things.
"Either it was a criminal act or it was not. Either MH370 was caused by some technical event, which would make it an exceptionally complicated accident with a complicated chain of events, or MH370 was a manmade event — a devious but simple criminal act, with no complicated chain of events to unravel," he wrote.
"The evidence confirms it was a criminal act, committed by one individual who, as a pilot in the aeroplane, had a simple means to carry it out. That is what happened, and that is a fact."
Senior Boeing 777 pilot and instructor Simon Hardy told 60 Minutes on Sunday he believed the pilot deliberately flew the aircraft over his hometown of Penang for an "emotional goodbye".
He said he made the discovery by reconstructing Captain Shah's flight plan from the military radar and found he had avoided detection by either Malaysian or Thai military radar by flying along the border, crossing in and out of each country's airspace.
Captain Keane also published a forensic reconstruction of the flight in The Australian.
In it he concluded Captain Shah killed the passengers and crew by depressurising the aircraft while he was on the pilot's long oxygen supply.
"You may recall my observation of 'complicity to a crime' if the ATSB cling to their version of events when they have knowledge to the contrary," he told The Australian.
"Put bluntly, the MH370 'crash' is undoubtedly a crime of the unlawful killing of 238 innocent people. The Australian government has also been remiss, they should have put pressure on the ATSB to listen, and act, on professional advice from the aviation community."
In his book, Vance also writes the ATSB should have abandoned its theory in 2015 when the plane's right-wing flaperon was discovered mostly intact on the French Indian Ocean island of Reunion.
Vance said he envisioned the plane on the bottom of the ocean, with the fuselage in one piece and the left wing still on.
"The right wing may be off, the engines are separate, but you basically have four pieces of aeroplane down there," he said.
"It's not scattered all over the bottom of the ocean."
JACC has not responded to news.com.au's inquiries, which can only be directed via email.
The media section on the government's website has not been updated since 2016, with the last post on its homepage written in January this year about the search.
Ocean Infinity started the search on January 22, following a failed $200 million search for the plane.
The investigation is expected to end in mid-June.