Australian officials deny claims MH370 can be seen from the air, was riddled with bullet holes

Australian officials on Sunday shut down rumors that missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 could be seen in the Indian Ocean and was riddled with "bullet holes."

Peter McMahon, a 64-year-old Australian mechanical engineer, claimed that Google Earth images purportedly showed the missing plane in the water 10 miles south of the island of Mauritius, an island nation in the Indian Ocean, The Sun reported.

The images that Peter McMahon said showed the missing Malaysia Airlines flight were from 2009, officials said.

The images that Peter McMahon said showed the missing Malaysia Airlines flight were from 2009, officials said.

The engineer reportedly said officials with the Australian Transport and Safety Bureau (ATSB) told him the images — which appear to show a basic outline of a plane — could show the aircraft, which vanished on March 8, 2014. However, officials speaking to Fox News denied they told him that.

A spokesperson for the Joint Agency Coordination Center (JACC) told Fox News in a statement that McMahon reached out to the agency via Facebook and email in 2016 and 2017, but at no time "did the ATSB suggest [McMahon's] evidence could be missing flight MH370."

The Google Earth images Peter McMahon sent to the Australian agency were from Nov. 6, 2009 — more than four years before the airplane disappeared.

The Google Earth images Peter McMahon sent to the Australian agency were from Nov. 6, 2009 — more than four years before the airplane disappeared.

The Google Earth images McMahon sent to the Australian agency were from Nov. 6, 2009 — more than four years before the airplane disappeared, officials added.

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McMahon, according to The Sun, also claimed officials didn't want the plane to be found because "it's full of bullet holes" — a subject which he did not further elaborate.

The JACC told Fox News that McMahon's claims were "spurious" and that they "must be particularly upsetting for the family and friends of those lost on Malaysia Airlines flight MH370."

A man looking at a message board remembering the MH370 passengers on March 3, 2018, four years after the jet vanished.

A man looking at a message board remembering the MH370 passengers on March 3, 2018, four years after the jet vanished. (REUTERS/Lai Seng Sin)

The flight's disappearance has been regarded as one of the world's biggest mysteries. The Boeing 777 flight was carrying 227 passengers and 12 crew members when it disappeared into its flight from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing in 2014.

The downed flight sparked sprawling searches from the Indian Ocean to the east coast of Africa. U.S.-based company Ocean Infinity in January was approved to start a new expedition in search of wreckage from the flight.