A federal grand jury on Thursday charged a former Boeing pilot with defrauding safety regulators about the 737 Max jet, which was involved in two fatal crashes that claimed lives.
The former pilot, Mark A. Forkner, 49, is charged with providing the Federal Aviation Administration with false and incomplete information about an automated flight control system that played a role in the crash, which killed 346 people.
According to prosecutors, due to Forkner’s alleged fraud, the system was not mentioned in the pilot’s manual or training materials.
Forkner’s attorneys did not immediately respond to a request for comment. Boeing itself declined to comment.
The 737 Max jet crashes occurred in 2018 in Indonesia, and 2019 in Ethiopia. The pilots were unable to gain control of the controls, and both planes dived a few minutes after takeoff. Forkner was then Boeing’s chief technical pilot on the Max program. (ka/rs)