Investigations

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Florida Aircraft Parts Manufacturer Sentenced to Over 3 Years Imprisonment and Ordered to Pay $1.3 Million in Restitution

On February 9, 2010, in the Southern District of Florida, John Falco, former owner of Falcon Aviation Group, an aircraft parts manufacturer, was sentenced to serve 37 months in prison followed by 36 months supervised release. Mr. Falco, was also ordered to pay $1.3 million in restitution previously pled guilty to a one-count information charging him with fraudulently representing the condition of aircraft parts.

The Department of Transportation, Office of Inspector General, initiated this investigation based on information obtained from an anonymous complaint alleging that a conspiracy existed in which companies who were not approved by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) or Department of Defense (DoD), had manufactured aircraft parts. These parts included aircraft skins, wings, and control surfaces for various U.S. military aircraft. In most cases, these manufacturers did not sell directly to the U.S. Air Force (USAF); instead they sold to various brokers or authorized DoD contractors who conspired with them to sell these substandard aircraft parts to the USAF. In cases where the customer required supporting FAA authentication, brokers further conspired with FAA repair stations to falsify forms, giving the illusion that the manufactured parts had been approved by the FAA and were suitable for installation on an aircraft.