A British Airways pilot sentenced to 12 months in prison for misleading authorities about his flight experience

LONDON — A pilot has been jailed for fraud to get the job with British Airways. The British Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) said he lied about his flight hours to secure a position at the British Airways subsidiary BA CityFlyer and former Irish regional operator Stobart Air.

49 years old Craig Butfoy was accused of making false claims to continue his career as a captain with both carriers between April 2016 and March 2018.

Butfoy was sentenced to 12 months in prison on Monday after pleading guilty in a regional court. The former pilot was tried on four separate charges of fraud and two breaches of the Air Navigation Order 2016, according to the CAA.

“The Civil Aviation Authority’s prosecution and the sentence imposed show that offenses of this kind are taken very seriously by the Civil Aviation Authority and the courts. Pilot integrity is at the heart of aviation safety and we will take all steps necessary to maintain that position,”

 Jonathan Spence, general counsel at the CAA, said.

Butfoy falsely claimed to have 1,610 flight hours as a captain in his job application submitted to BA CityFlyer. Besides lying about his flight experience, he also gave other inaccurate details such as holding a private pilot’s license since 1998 while adding fabricated documents on his resume, including a training course certificate.

Butfoy also intentionally made false entries into the pilot logbook about his simulator training times.

“The safety of our customers and crew is always our priority, and the fully-qualified pilot was suspended and an investigation launched as soon as BA CityFlyer became aware of discrepancies in his employment record. At no point was there any risk to customers or colleagues,” 

British Airways said in a statement.

British Airways also said that Butfoy had a full pilot’s license.
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