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Four Employees of Hansen Helicopters Indicted for Multiple Fraud Schemes Against FAA and NTSB

On May 30, 2018, John D. Walker, owner of Hansen Helicopters, Inc., and company employees Marvin R. Reed, Kenneth R. Crowe, and Phillip T. Kapp were indicted in U.S. District Court, District of Guam. They were charged with numerous crimes including conspiracy to defraud FAA and the National Transportation Safety Board, wire fraud, honest services fraud, and money laundering. 

The indictment alleges that, beginning as early as 1997, the defendants circumvented U.S. aviation safety regulations for the purpose of reducing costs and maximizing the profits at Hansen Helicopters. They used aircraft that had been previously deregistered—because they had been destroyed, scrapped, or otherwise deemed not airworthy—and concealed these facts in documents and records submitted to FAA. 

A Hansen aircraft bearing tail number N9068F crashed on September 2, 2015, killing pilot Rafael Antonio Cruz Santos. Hansen later provided logbook entries to FAA indicating that certain inspections and maintenance had been performed on N9068F when they had not.

The indictment also alleges the defendants purchased a Taylorcraft BC-12D aircraft valued at approximately $20,000 for Timothy Cislo, a former FAA aviation safety inspector. In exchange Cislo agreed to sign, issue, and reissue special airworthiness certificates to several helicopters belonging to Hansen without properly inspecting and examining them. Cislo pleaded guilty to honest services wire fraud on March 28, 2018.

DOT-OIG is working on this investigation with the FBI and the Internal Revenue Service–Criminal Investigation.

Note: Indictments, informations, and criminal complaints are only accusations by the Government. All defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.