The small Mexican-registered plane that crashed last weekend in Ecuador was carrying $1.3 million, police said.

Santiago Alfonso Lopez Monzon, 22, and Cruz Alfredo Solis Lopez, 36, who had Mexican documents, died in Sunday's accident.

The cash may be linked to drug trafficking, police said.

A suitcase containing the money was found in the wreckage, a police spokesman in the city of Pedernales told Efe.

The small plane went down Sunday night in the coastal province Manabi.

The aircraft was flying low before the crash, apparently to avoid radar, eyewitnesses said.

President Rafael Correa said in a radio interview Wednesday that drug trafficking was not out of control in Ecuador.

"Ecuador is doing much better (in the war on drugs) than other countries. The only Andean country that does not have drug cultivation is Ecuador and we are next to the world's main drug producers," the president said.