DOJ Considering Charges For Boeing

( – U.S. federal prosecutors are mulling over the potential for criminal charges against aircraft manufacturer and defense contractor Boeing for the deaths of hundreds that resulted from crashes in 2018 and 2019 involving the company’s 737 Max passenger jet.

The company has been accused of violating a 2021 era agreement to revise and update its quality control practices after several public incidents suggest there are major problems with aircraft manufacturing at the company. The company agreed to pay a $2.5 billion fine as well as improve its quality control after 346 people died in the two prior crashes. Prosecutors are weighing the potential to prosecute the company and will make a decision by July 7.

Department of Justice officials met with Boeing lawyers on June 27, according to the corporate press. Boeing’s lawyers argued that there was no reason to prosecute and that the previous agreement could still be upheld or modified to the satisfaction of the DOJ. Lawyers for the company previously claimed that the agreement was being faithfully executed despite numerous incidents in the past six months that suggest major problems at the company.

Prosecutors will also meet with family members of those killed in the crashes before making their final determination. Reports suggest the families were updated on the latest status of the DOJ’s investigation over the weekend of June 30.

Previous reports in the corporate press indicate that prosecuting attorneys have suggested criminal prosecution to higher ups at the DOJ. That doesn’t mean there will be a criminal indictment however; it could be a precursor to modifying the agreement which observers believe is more likely.

A January 5 incident triggered the current round of scrutiny after a plug fashioned to seal a door portal in the plane’s fuselage blew out while the plane was in flight. A faulty bolt was to blame, and the plane was completely depressurized shortly after takeoff. The Alaska Airlines flight had to perform an emergency landing at Portland International Airport. The incident came just two days before the previous agreement was set to expire.

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