Almost two years after the death of the Argentine striker Emiliano Sala, the trial at Cardiff Crown Court reached its decisive stages: David henderson, pilot who organized the flight that transferred the footballer from France to the United Kingdom, was found guilty of negligence.
Henderson, 67, was accused of not following safety regulations elementals to diagram the transfer in the single-engine Piper Malibu aircraft with registration N264DB that crashed into the English Channel with Sala on board while being piloted by David Ibbotson.
The French newspaper Le Parisien reported that Henderson face a five-year prison sentence and that the possibility of filing appeals against this decision expires on November 12 next. The decision of the popular jury that found him guilty was known after more than seven hours of debate. Henderson furthermore is exposed to two years of detention for prosecutions related to the transport of a passenger without authorization, something of which he pleaded guilty.
During the last days, the court had access to some conversations that Henderson maintained as soon as the disappearance of the plane was known during the night of January 21, 2019. Ibbo crashed into the Malibu. He died and killed the passenger. It’s a fucking mess. There will be an investigation “, he sent to a friend as revealed by the newspaper at that time The Guardian. “Open a whole can of worms. Stay very quiet “, was another of Henderson’s contacts with people in his inner circle. And he sent a note to the plane’s engineer: “Don’t say a word to anyone”.
Another of the data that is they met throughout the trial It came through Fay Keely, CEO of Cool Flourish Ltd, the company that owns the single-engine Piper Malibu aircraft. That company chose Henderson as the aircraft operator in 2015, who was obliged to maintain the plane. According to the local media Wales Online, Keely stated that he had sent an email to Henderson six months before the tragic accident to warn him that Ibbotson should not take control of the vehicle after the company received various fines from the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) for infractions that had committed.
Henderson defended himself and, although he acknowledged that he hired Ibbotson for this job, aimed at the person in charge of commanding the plane: “It is always the pilot to guarantee the safety of a flight”. The February 6 of that year, a work team rescued a body with an underwater vehicle remotely controlled from a ship: hours later it was confirmed that they were the remains of the 28-year-old footballer. Ibbotson’s body was never found.
The score that the newspaper reviewed Wales Online recalls that the plane was not authorized to carry commercial passengers, plus Ibbotson did not have a commercial pilot license and was not qualified to travel at night. Based on all these facts, the prosecutor Martin Goudie QC had told the court that Henderson was at command of an “incompetent, undocumented, dishonest and risk-creating” structure, which violated numerous regulations. Attorney Stephen Spence, in charge of the defendant’s defense, said his client’s shortcomings were related to a “paperwork problem.”
Judge Foxton allowed the defendant to remain free on bail, but warned him that “all sentencing options remain open.” Henderson will appear at the Cardiff Crown Court for the final judgment next Friday, November 12.
Sala made his career as a footballer in French soccer. He started on the ascent with the Orléans and Niort jerseys, but then made a jump to Bordeaux. With a previous step for Caen, he had his best performance with the shirt of the Nantes, which had earned him this transfer to Cardiff city of the British Premier League.
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Trial for the death of Emiliano Sala: the organizer of the flight was found guilty