Student Who Tracked Elon Musk’s Jet

…Is Now Following Russian Oligarchs Amid Invasion Of Ukraine

A college student who became famous for tracking Elon Musk’s private jet on Twitter has now started following Russian oligarchs after the nation invaded Ukraine.

University of Central Florida freshman Jack Sweeney set up a Twitter account called @RUOligarchJets to track the movements of aircraft owned by top Russian billionaires.

The account claimed to follow 31 private jets owned by nine Russian leaders as of Saturday. Additional aircraft have been added based on user recommendations.

Sweeney’s efforts are made public and can be tracked by anyone following the Twitter account.

“The aircrafts these oligarchs have are absolutely crazy,” Sweeney told Bloomberg News, noting some of the planes include the Airbus A319 and Boeing 737.

“Their planes are huge compared to other jets,” he added.

Some of the billionaires the account follows include Roman Abramovich, who owns the Chelsea soccer team, Vladimir Potanin, and Norlisk Nikel, among others.

The Russian jets will no longer be allowed to fly over the European Union or Canada after both introduced bans to Russian airlines from its airspace following the invasion of Ukraine. The U.S. has considered similar action, but has yet to move forward on a Russian flight ban.

The hold may be connected to a call for U.S. citizens to leave Russia immediately. On Sunday, the State Department issued a Security Alert urging American citizens to leave Russia by whatever commercial means are available. The Daily Wire reported:

An increasing number of airlines are cancelling flights into and out of Russia, and numerous countries have closed their airspace to Russian airlines. U.S. citizens should consider departing Russia immediately via commercial options still available. The U.S. Embassy reminds U.S. citizens that the Department of State’s Travel Advisory level for Russia is at “Level 4: Do Not Travel.”

This alert comes several days after Russia launched a full-scale invasion of Ukraine, and follows a January 23 Level 4 Travel Advisory encouraging Americans not to travel to Russia.

“Do not travel to Russia due to ongoing tension along the border with Ukraine, the potential for harassment against U.S. citizens, the embassy’s limited ability to assist U.S. citizens in Russia, COVID-19 and related entry restrictions, terrorism, harassment by Russian government security officials, and the arbitrary enforcement of local law,” the advisory read.

The college student’s new Russian-billionaire flight tracking account had more than 126,000 followers as of Tuesday morning.

Sweeney has also launched an account to follow Russian President Vladimir Putin’s private jet, according to a post on his personal account. The @PutinJet profile might not be “too accurate” according to Sweeney, due to multiple aircraft and coverage issues.

Sweeney’s flight-tracking activity came to prominence in November after Tesla and SpaceX CEO Musk offered him $5,000 to delete his account that tracked his personal jet.

It’s not every day that the world’s richest person sends you a personal message on Twitter for the world to see, with Sweeney offering an intriguing reply.

“Yes I can but it’ll cost you a Model 3 only joking unless?” Sweeney replied.

“I don’t love the idea of being shot by a nutcase,” Musk said.

Sweeney counter-offered at $50,000, telling Musk the money would be “great support in college and would possibly allow me to get a car maybe even a Model 3,” according to the New York Post.

The account, @ElonJet, provides updates on flights using public data. Updates have continued despite the Twitter interaction with Musk.

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