Man Who Arranged Emiliano Sala Flight Jailed For 18 Months

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A former RAF commander who organized the flight that killed footballer Emiliano Sala has been sentenced to 18 months in prison. Mr Justice Foxton, the judge, told David Henderson, 67, that he had put profit before of safety when he was accused of running a “cowboy operation” in court.

Henderson wanted to help a “important client,” football agent Willie McKay, so he arranged for pilot David Ibbotson to fly Sala, 28, despite the fact that his license did not enable him to transport passengers on commercial planes, according to Foxton.

The judge said: “You sent numerous messages to Mr Ibbotson; I’m sure these messages illustrate a lurking doubt as to whether he was fully up to the job, He told Henderson he had a “cavalier” attitude to organising the flight, adding: “Air safety regulations and systems … are written in blood.”

The judge said Henderson was guilty of a “flagrant breach” of safety regulations for profit. He continued: “I am sure aspects of your operation were unlawful and you took steps to keep them off the radar as far as the CAA [the UK Civil Aviation Authority] were involved.

“This was illustrated by your message to Mr Ibbotson, which read: ‘We both have the opportunity to make money out of the business model but not if we upset clients or draw the attention of the CAA’. You were reckless rather than merely negligent by disregarding the regulations.”

source : Guardian sport

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