← Back to Squawk list
Judge says the 737 MAX crash deal between Boeing and the Justice Deparment violates federal lawFORT WORTH, TEXAS — A judge from North Texas U.S. District questioned the deferred plea agreement Boeing's $2.5 billion in the 737 MAX probe. The court said government prosecutors failed to consult with the relatives of 346 victims who were killed in two deadly crashes in 2018 and 2019. (www.airlinerwatch.com) More...
Sort type: [Top] [Newest]
I am no attorney, but my question would be why would Boeing need to consult the relatives of the victims since they had already paid the airlines involved, accepted a criminal fine, AND paid the victims' families a half-billion dollars? I think that the FAA was largely responsible because of the latitude they gave Boeing in the certification process which probably moved too quickly. The executives, if any, who I would consider criminally culpable would be those in the design of the Maneuvering Characteristics Augmentation System (MCAS). Apparently, there was not enough testing done on the simulator under real-word situations.
I think it is dangerous when any court decides company executives cannot be held liable. It needs clear and transparent investigation, with the results publicly available. If company executives were complicit, then there is no excuse for exclusion. I am not saying they should be charged just because they are an executive of the company, but just like any small or family business, if they knowingly were complicit in their actions, they are liable, both morally and legally. But like so many times, if the company is big enough, and has enough political clout, some of the culprits can escape, and the underlings who are simply carrying out orders or instructions take the fall. Of course, when it comes to moral and legal obligations, likewise, if that underling knows it is wrong, then they should not have sanctioned or performed the action either. Having results publicly available, also precludes the legal fraternity from getting away with things too. Not that there would ever be backroom deals.
The court wasn't deciding anything. The judge ruled that the plea deal was not reached according to the law.
Exactly! Thank You!
Exactly right. And, their ability to use "political clout" will be enhanced by moving their HQ to the DC area. Penalties paid by insurance companies on behalf of Boeing adds to the lack of moral accountability clearly demonstrated by Boeing (IMHO). Boeing has to fix this - somehow - before they attempt to regain their place as the leading aircraft manufacturer. But, alas no one is listening....... Very sad.
After Arthur Anderson's criminal conviction (later overturned), the company essentially was unable to continue doing business. While accounting has different qualifications than aeronautics companies, criminally charging a company as opposed to people can have consequences to both the US economy and defense industry. Boeing may be unable to serve as a government contractor if they are a convicted felon. The effects would likely be immediate. This is why there have not been criminal convictions of significant corporations since Anderson. Convicting a company is significantly different than convicting people within a company.