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Mississippi Man Indicted for Operating an Aircraft Without an Airman’s Certificate and Obstructing a Fatal Airplane Crash Investigation

On December 13, 2017, Charles B. Phillips, was indicted in U.S. District Court, Oxford, Mississippi, for conducting commercial flights for hire and providing flight instruction without a valid airman’s certificate, and obstructing the investigation of a plane crash that involved several fatalities. In 2009, FAA barred Phillips from operating any aircraft, due to medical reasons, and from providing flight instruction, including instrument competency checks, without a valid FAA flight instructor’s certificate. However, the investigation revealed that between March 2013 and July 2016, he was paid for approximately 51 flights for which he served as the pilot in command. He also acted as a flight instructor on multiple occasions between March 2016 and May 2016, although his certificate had expired. In addition, Phillips was charged with providing false statements and documentation to FAA and NTSB about a former student who operated an aircraft that resulted in a 2016 fatal crash.
DOT-OIG conducted this investigation with the assistance of FAA and NTSB.
Note: Indictments, informations, and criminal complaints are only accusations by the Government. All defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.