US grand jury indicts former pilot of Boeing 737 MAX jet for fraud


Issued on:

A US federal grand jury on Thursday charged a former Boeing chief test pilot with misleading aviation regulators during the certification process for the 737 MAX, which was involved in two fatal crashes.

Mark Forkner, 49, was the lead contact between the aviation giant and the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) over how pilots should be trained to fly the planes.

Forkner “provided the agency with materially false, inaccurate, and incomplete information about a new part of the flight controls for the Boeing 737 MAX” flight handling system, called the Characteristics Augmentation System (MCAS), that was blamed for the 2018 and 2019 crashes, the Justice Department said in a statement.

According to court documents, Forkner had discovered information in 2016 about a major change made to the MCAS that was supposed to prevent stalling, but deliberately chose not to share the details with the FAA.

As a result, the FAA did not include a reference to the MCAS in a critical document or, in turn, in training manuals for pilots.

Forkner is also accused of conspiring against Boeing customers who purchased 737 MAX aircraft by withholding critical information.

According to documents published in early 2020, he boasted that he could deceive his FAA contacts to obtain certification for the MCAS.

The 737 MAX was formally certified in March 2017, but was grounded worldwide for 20 months following two crashes in October 2018 and March 2019 that killed a total of 346 people.

In both cases, the MCAS had run amok based on faulty information transmitted by one of the aircraft’s two sensors.

The MAX was allowed to fly again at the end of 2020, once the MCAS software was modified.

Boeing has acknowledged its responsibility in misleading regulators and agreed to pay more than $2.5 billion dollars to settle lawsuits.

Forkner was formally indicted Thursday by a grand jury in Texas on two counts of fraud involving aircraft parts and four counts of wire fraud.

If convicted, he could face up to 100 years in prison.

“Forkner allegedly withheld critical information from regulators,” said Texas federal prosecutor Chad Meacham.

“The Department of Justice will not tolerate fraud — especially in industries where the stakes are so high.”

Boeing did not respond to an AFP request for comment.


Stay connected with us on social media platform for instant update click here to join our  Twitter, & Facebook

We are now on Telegram. Click here to join our channel (@TechiUpdate) and stay updated with the latest Technology headlines.

For all the latest Health News Click Here 

 For the latest news and updates, follow us on Google News

Read original article here

Denial of responsibility! is an automatic aggregator around the global media. All the content are available free on Internet. We have just arranged it in one platform for educational purpose only. In each content, the hyperlink to the primary source is specified. All trademarks belong to their rightful owners, all materials to their authors. If you are the owner of the content and do not want us to publish your materials on our website, please contact us by email – [email protected]. The content will be deleted within 24 hours.

Leave a comment