Bogus Aircraft Inspector Jailed


So, who’s doing the 100-hour inspection on your airplane? Three owners who took their planes to a business at Hayward Executive Airport near Oakland, Calif., discovered the hard way that their annuals weren’t worth the paper they were signed on. And one of them could have paid a heavier price. U.S. District Court Judge Saundra Brown Armstrong sentenced James M. Hays, of nearby Lakeport, to two years in jail for falsely certifying the inspections on the aircraft. According to a report in the Oakland Tribune, Hays was a mechanic and owned Hays Aviation but he was not licensed to do inspections. After Hays had illegally signed off one of the aircraft, a properly credentialed inspector discovered an exhaust leak that could have allowed carbon monoxide to enter the cabin through the heater. A hearing will be held April 15 to determine the restitution Hays must pay the aircraft owners. He goes to jail the next day. He’s also been stripped permanently of his mechanic and pilot certificates by the FAA.