June 11, 2020
Imprisoned Former FAA Inspector Ordered To Pay Restitution
On June 11, 2020, Manuel R. Fernandez, formerly an FAA aviation safety inspector, was ordered by the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida to pay $148,145.81 in restitution to FAA and Honeywell Aerospace.
On December 5, 2019, Fernandez was sentenced to 75 months’ incarceration with 3 years of supervised release. Fernandez was further ordered to pay a $2,100 assessment and $10,000 fine. He was also forbidden to further work in the aviation parts business. He surrendered himself to the U.S. Marshals Service in January 2020.
The investigation revealed that between 2010 and 2013, Fernandez entered into a criminal conspiracy with Avcom Avionics & Instruments (Avcom), an FAA-authorized repair station in South Florida. In violation of his official duties as an FAA inspector, Fernandez conspired to provide Avcom with unauthorized technical publications, notices, and warnings about inspections and investigations and competitors’ confidential information in exchange for monies and gifts.
This investigation was conducted by DOT-OIG and the Federal Bureau of Investigation with substantial assistance from FAA.