Aviation Accident:

Criminal Liability

Federal and state governments have the right to impose criminal sanctions on those responsible for causing an aviation accident; these can be brought against commercial airlines or private owners/operators. The cause of these criminal sanctions is criminal negligence, that is, reckless conduct resulting in damage to property, serious injury, or death; the use of drugs or alcohol before flying are one example of criminal negligence. Mere accidents are not a basis for criminal sanctions. A criminal conviction may result in punitive damages and/or incarceration. The most basic levels of criminal charges that may be brought in an aviation accident are Criminal Negligence/Involuntary Manslaughter, Manslaughter, and Third Degree Murder.

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