Boeing shareholders have filed a complaint accusing board members, including current boss David Calhoun and his predecessor Dennis Muilenburg, and other executives of failing to take all necessary steps to prevent the 737 crisis MAX weakening the aircraft manufacturer for over a year.
The complaint, consulted on Friday by AFP, was filed in June in a Delaware court before being updated in September.
The complainants accuse the members of the board, a body supposed to supervise the management, of not having put in place the tools to assess and control the safety of the 737 MAX before the two fatal accidents that led to its ban on flying anywhere in the world in March 2019. They evoke, for example, the absence of a committee dedicated to security or of a whistleblower system.
The members of the board of directors have, denounces the complaint, “no excuse” for not having ensured the safety of the apparatus, especially insofar as they were, on several occasions, alerted of problems. on the design, manufacture and marketing of other aircraft of the company.
These accusations are strongly contested by Boeing.
“As you would expect (…) in a lawsuit like this, the complaint presents a biased and misleading version of the facts of the activities of Boeing and its board of directors” during the period complained of, reacted a spokesperson for the company.
The lawsuits are “baseless” and Boeing will work to have the complaint dismissed by the end of the year, he added.
The Wall Street Journal, the bible of American business circles, was the first major media outlet to raise this complaint on Friday.
In support of their accusations, the plaintiffs, led by the officials of the pension funds of the officials of the State of New York and the fire and police of the State of Colorado, present internal documents to the company. Parts of it are heavily censored for confidentiality reasons.
Board members and named executives, such as CFO Greg Smith, have in their eyes failed in their duty by not doing enough to ensure the safety of Boeing planes.
The plaintiffs therefore demand that the members of the board and the officers singled out should reimburse Boeing for the financial losses generated by their lack of supervision as well as all the remuneration received in the course of their duties.
For the two plane crashes of Lion Air in October 2018 and Ethiopian Airlines in March 2019, which left 346 dead in total, Boeing is already the subject of various investigations by the authorities and complaints from the families of the victims.