Boeing has agreed to pay Ksh273,875,000,000, following a criminal charge related to a conspiracy to defraud the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).
Of the amount, Ksh54,775,000,000 is expected to go to the Ethiopian and Indonesian crash victims’ families.
The US Justice Department (DOJ) said that it had reached the agreement with the plane manufacturer, bringing to a close the case that has been going on for sometime now.
“According to the settlement agreement with the DOJ, Boeing will establish a Ksh54,775,000,000 fund to compensate the families of the 346 victims who died in the crash of Ethiopian Airlines ET302 in Ethiopia and the Lion Air JT610 in Indonesia” said Mr Manuel von Ribbeck of Ribbeck Law Chartered who represents at least 88 families.
This means that each family will receive at least Ksh153,370,000 each.
“We have facilitated all the families we represented from both Boeing MAX 8 crashes to get their money from two other funds previously established by Boeing pro bono and we will represent again the majority of the families of passengers and crew members from the Max 8 crashes to collect the settlement proceeds as soon as this fund is established,” added Mr Ribbeck.
Lion Air Flight 610, a Boeing 737 MAX, crashed on October 29, 2018 moments after takeoff in Indonesia, killing all the 189 on board.
The accident, according to the FAA, was caused by Maneuvering Characteristics Augmentation System (MCAS) which was activated during the flight.
Boeing had concealed information about the change to MCAS, and it was discovered the first time by FAA after the accident.
On March 10, 2019, an Ethiopian Airlines plane headed for Nairobi, Kenya crashed after its MCAS failed shortly after takeoff from Addis Ababa’s Bole International Airport, killing all 149 on board. 32 Kenyans perished in the accident.
“We have already contacted the DOJ in order to start the process of getting these funds on behalf of our clients,” added Mr Ribbeck.
The victims’ case was handled by Ribbeck Law alongside David Njoroge, partner at Igeria & Ngugi Advocates in Nairobi.
“Ribbeck Law, our Chicago counterparts, will immediately begin processing of the extra funds for our clients and we further expect to conclude the remaining cases within the next 3-months to ensure families get compensated promptly,” said Mr Njoroge.