Civil Matter – American School of Aviation

A file photo of Flight Instructors of American School of Aviation, Atwater, CA
A file photo of Flight Instructors of American School of Aviation, Atwater, CA

Possible code and ordinance violations;

Federal Statutory Code;

Improper aircraft registration
Non compliance with aircraft registration requirement

Improper aircraft maintenance
Non compliance with aircraft maintenance requirement

Improper school operation
Non compliance with P141 school requirement

Improper report, paperwork
Non compliance with AFSP, DHS requirement

Non payment on tax due
Non compliance with IRS requirement

Non payment on employment taxes
Non compliance with IRS requirement

California State Statutory Code;

No aircraft insurance filing
Non compliance with PUC insurance requirement

No payment on employment taxes
Non compliance with EDD requirement

No delivery of services contracted and paid
Non compliance with Business & Professions code requirement

No tuition refund made
Non compliance with DEO requirement

No payment on fuel purchased
Non compliance with Business and Professions Code requirement

Merced County Ordinance;

Unpaid office/hangar, tie-down rent
Non compliance with county lease agreement

Unhealthy dormitory conditions
Non compliance with county health code requirement

Hazardous and reckless operation
Non compliance with airport operations requirement

And perhaps in more possible violations committed by ASA. Any competent lawyer should be able to find an appropriate code, ordinance citation and build a strong enough case against the duo Prince and Reny in a civil court for getting a civil penalty and judgement in their respective case.

Echo Yankee

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Scheduling a forthcoming DASA (Defunct ASA) check ride, and it’s not funny.

My conjecture from the sideline:

CFI – Certified Flight Instructor
DPE – Designated Pilot Examiner

– Plausible hone conversation between CFI and DPE –

CFI: Hi , Jim here… used to be at Castle ASA remember me?
Hey listen, I’ve got a student ready for a commercial check ride real soon.

DPE: Hi Jim, I’ve heard you guys were closed and Prince and Reny are in hot water…………..
so what about this check ride? Has he met all requirements and the paper work ready?

CFI: Yup. no problem there, he’s ready and I’ll have all paper work ready for you.
How about Saturday at Yandell Ranch OK?

DPE: Where?

CFI: you know the small private field about 7 miles west of town on 132…
we’ve got owner’s permission and everything.

DPE: why not at muni? Besides the runway is way too short over there and they even don’t have fuel.

CFI: we’ve been doing a lot of flying at private fields lately because feds and repo guys are snooping around for some reason, and we’d like to keep them off our tail, you know.

oh don’t worry about fuel, we call up Prince and Reny on cellphone and they deliver it right up,
normally they carry few 5 gallon cans in the car.

DPE: what? You guys been using auto gas? Do you have a STC for that?

CFI: Prince said we do, and I trust him.

DPE: Yah right!

CFI: Hey listen, Prince and Reny are just driving up, I’ve got to run, I’ll call you again later. Click….

DPE: Tche, tche! (shaking head)

Got the picture?

echo yankee, out!

Open Letter to the FAA Flight Standard District Office, Fresno, CA

James Murray- Operations Supervisor
David Lehman – Airworthiness Supervisor

In Re: American School of Aviation

Dear Messrs Murray and Lehman:

In the FAA Aircraft Registry records, there appears to exist conflicting records that are likely to constitute a violation in compliance with the statutory requirement relating to civil aircraft registry in the US.

Synopsis:
American School of Aviation, Inc. is a California corporation with its president and other corporate officer(s) are not U.S. citizen.

Title 14 CFR Part 47 of the Federal Aviation Regulations (FAR) governs the requirement related to the civil aircraft registration in the US

Part 47.3 stipulates Registration required.
Part 47.5 defines Applicants.
Part 47.7 defines U.S. citizens and resident aliens with respect to civil aircraft registration.
Part 47.9 defines “Corporations not U.S. citizen”.
Part 47.9 (f) stipulates thrice annual report requirement by the registrant to the FAA.

Analysis:
All ASA aircraft except one (30 before 8/04/08 down to 11 as of 8/14/2008 ) are currently registered under FAR Part 47.7 and issued aircraft registration certificate bearing “Corporation” instead of its true and factual status of its corporate entity as “Foreign Corporation”. In the FAA AC Form 8050-1 Aircraft Registration Application, there is a specific box to be checked off for Non-citizen Corporation and provided along with “Certification” section for the applicant’s certification for a non-citizen corporation. If these sections were properly completed in the ASA aircraft registration application, all of its registration then should have been issued under Part 47.9 with the respective registration certificate bearing ”Foreign corporation”

Conclusion:
If ASA has made erroneous entry in its aircraft registration application and submitted to the FAA Aircraft Registry knowingly or not knowingly and obtained its registration certificate, then the ASA aircraft are not registered under Part 47.9 and not in compliance with Part 47.9(f) requirement. This ipso facto invalidates all of its registrations under FAR 47.41(a) ( 8 ) (ii) and requires ASA to surrender all of its invalidated registration certificate immediately in accordance with FAR 47.43 (b).

One of the school owners had publicly stated their school received 109 surveillance visits from your office in 2007, yet why this blatant aircraft registration violation eluded the filed inspectors scrutiny is beyond me.

There exists an ample evidence based on flight activities taking place recently at Hayward, Modesto and elsewhere to indicate the school is still operating under the guise of new satellite base after its 141 school certification has been long presumed to be suspended if not revoked already.

In view of the matter affecting the welfare and interests of all those victimized students as well as that of local aviation community, it would be most appropriate that your office offers a public announcement in connection with the ASA matter as soon as aircraft registration investigation is completed.

All eyes are on your prudent and swift enforcement action.

Respectfully submitted.

Echo Yankee

Follow up: Open letter to SABA President Khurshid Khoja, Esquire

My view from the sideline:

Dear Mr. Khoja,

I am following up on my open letter of 7/30/2008 addressed to you subsequent to SABA’s announcement to come to aid for the ASA students stranded in Atwater upon its sudden closure in June 2008.

Have you received a reply since from the DA’s office in response to your earlier request then made?

So, what sort of progress has been made and continue to be made at SABA to help those former ASA students in distress?

Why no SABA initiative so far for assisting the victimized students to file an individual or consolidated crime report with the sheriff’s department, the first step necessary for a criminal prosecution from the victim’s end?

Do you really believe in your trained legal professional mind that the ASA students qualify for a “U” visa with an employment authorization that I believe you’re referring to in your earlier statement? If not, please explain.

What makes you believe the “U” visa relief will work in this situation despite seemingly clear cut eligibility requirement that precludes the former ASA students?

http://www.ilrc.org/resources/U%20Visa/Frequently%20Asked%20Questions.html

Above questions are not meant to be rhetorical and I truly believe the former ASA student’s interests along with that of public would be best served by the real answers provided in order to keep a false hope of any kind from emerging.

At the risk of giving an impression of being overly impatient, I adjure your thoughtful response in a timely fashion.

Respectfully submitted.

Echo Yankee
ATP/A&P

Question to all former ASA students who were the victims of criminal fraud

My view from the sideline:

Question,
Has anyone ever filed a crime report so far against Prince and Reny for a criminal fraud and received a crime reference number (CRN ) assigned by the sheriff’s department?………………….didn’t think so.

Over 100 students were wronged, yet no victims officially exist as far as the sheriff’s department is concerned because no crime report was filed.

Ignorance and assumptions are all too often dangerous.

No wonder this isn’t getting any traction. Much to my surprise, there seems to be no crime report against Prince and Reny has ever been filed with Merced County Sheriff’s Department by any former ASA student. Only one filed so far appears to be the fuel supplier who was reported to be owed $56,000 unpaid fuel.

Now onto your case, no matter how bad you want the duo to be put behind bars, just hoping and thinking doesn’t make it so. This is probably what’s transpiring: No criminal report filed→no criminal victim→no criminal charge brought forward That pretty much explains it. You all need to do what it takes by methodically following the established judicial procedures step by step. Here is what you need to do:

1. Go to Merced County Sheriff’s Department and get a Criminal Report Form http://www.mercedsheriff.com/
(If they don’t have the forms available get an instruction on how to prepare or better yet get a sample copy)

2. Contact SABA and ask one of their lawyers to help preparing a crime report
3. When it’s ready, take it to the Sheriff’s Department and file it.
4. Get a crime reference number (CRN ) assigned to your case (this is used for follow up and status check)
5. Tell everyone to do the same, more the better to place the case in a higher priority.
6. Follow up on the status using your CRN
7. Report on this blog from time to time to keep everyone posted until the justice is done.

Echo Yankee, over & out!

ASA could become the subject of a criminal probe led by FBI

ASA students celebrating Reny Kozman's b'day, a file photo.
ASA students celebrating Reny Kozman's b'day, a file photo.

American School of Aviation,  already besought with civil lawsuits, could become the subject of a criminal probe led by the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

Merced County District Attorney Larry Morse II has asked the FBI to take a role into the investigation of the American School of Aviation. Morse said the district attorney’s office needs the FBI’s assistance in performing forensic accounting to discover if crimes were committed by Manpreet “Prince” Singh and his wife Reny Kozman, who co-owned the flight school along with partners in India.

“There are a variety of issues involving potential criminal fraud arising from the situation,” Morse wrote in the letter sent to the FBI.

As a matter of course, the FBI will not confirm if they are involved in a criminal investigation.

The students’ tuition fees were supposed to be kept in a trust account and charged as the students progressed through their flight training. A lawsuit filed by 52 of the students in July alleges that Singh directed the tuition directly into his own accounts. It accuses him of fraud, breach of contract and misrepresentation. Among the allegations made against the school and Singh is that they continued to recruit students despite knowing they could not provide the instruction as promised.

The students are seeking $2.2 million in refunds and punitive damages. The lawsuit was filed with the Merced County Superior Court, but the papers have not been served upon Singh because he hasn’t been located, according to attorney Palvir Shoker, who filed the lawsuit on behalf of the students.

A second set of 10 students has filed a similar lawsuit and is seeking $200,000. The lawsuit was filed by attorney Jeffrey Poindexter and claims that the students were directed to a fake ASA Web site where they could ostensibly keep track of how their tuition funds were being deducted. The complaints states: “This accounting system was set up to deceive and mislead the students. As soon as the students would make a tuition payment of $40,000, the defendants would spend all of the money. This allegation is premised upon the fact that the defendants have conceded they owe the refunds, but claim they have no money to pay the refunds…

“By immediately spending the entirety of a student’s tuition, without providing the promised flight training and education, the defendants either purposefully, recklessly or negligently began operating as a sort of ponzi scheme. Each new student’s tuition would go to pay the costs and expense of earlier enrolled students.”

Reny Kozman has previously blamed the school’s financial hardships on partners based in India, who she says stole the school’s money in her email to SecondCity last month.

Understanding the California Penal Code likely to be applicable in the ASA case

My analysis from the sideline

What occurred or reported to have occurred at ASA

1. It (ASA) failed to deliver flight training to its students as per the agreement
2. It failed to refund the unused tuition to the students when requested.
3. It operated in violation of numerous Federal, State and local regulations.
4. They (Prince & Reny; owners) lacked moral, professional and business fitness to run a fight school.
5. They defrauded students.
6. They defrauded local merchants.
7. They defrauded local governments
8. They defrauded federal government
9. They endangered the health and welfare of the students and their parents home.

Applicable California State Penal Code
□§154 Debtor fraudulently removing, conveying, or concealing property;

Every debtor who fraudulently removes his property or effects out of this state, or fraudulently sells, conveys, assigns or conceals his property with intent to defraud, hinder or delay his creditors of their rights,
claims or demands, is punishable by imprisonment in the county jail not exceeding one year, or by fine not more than one thousand dollars ($1,000), or by both; provided, however, that where the property so removed or sold or conveyed, or assigned or concealed, consists of a stock in trade or a part thereof, of a value exceeding one hundred dollars, the offense shall be a felony and punishable as such.

□§155 Defendant or judgment debtor fraudulently removing, concealing, or disposing of personal
property sought to be recovered.

Every person against whom an action is pending, or against whom a judgment has been rendered for the recovery of any personal property, who fraudulently conceals, sells, or disposes of such property, with intent to hinder, delay, or defraud the person bringing such action or recovering such judgment, or with such intent the time of the commencement of such action or the rendering of such judgment, is punishable as provide in the proceeding section.

□§476a. Checks, drafts or orders on banks; insufficient funds; intent to defraud; punishment

Any person who willfully, with intent to defraud, makes or draws or utters or delivers any check, draft or order upon any bank or depositary, or person, or firm, or corporation, for the payment of money, knowing at the time of such making, drawing, uttering, or delivering that the maker or drawer or the corporation has not sufficient funds in, or credit with said bank or depositary for the payment of such check upon such funds then outstanding, in
Full upon its presentation is punishable by imprisonment in the county jail for not more than one year, or in the state prison.

□§484b. Diversion of funds received to obtain or pay for services, labor, materials or equipment

Any person who receives money for the purpose of obtaining services and wrongfully diverts the funds to a use other than that for which the funds were received, shall be guilty of a public offense and shall be punishable by a fine not exceeding ten thousand dollars ($10,000) or by imprisonment in the state prison, or in the county jail not exceeding one year, or by both such fine and such imprisonment.

□§532 False pretenses; obtaining money, labor, or property; punishment

Every person who knowingly and designedly, by any false or fraudulent representation or pretense, defrauds any other person of money, labor, or property, whether real or personal, is punishable in the same manner and to the same extent as for larceny of the money or property so obtained.

□§537 Defrauding innkeepers, etc.

Any person who obtains any accommodations at apartment house, without paying therefore, with intent to defraud the proprietor or manager thereof, is guilty of a public offense punishable by imprisonment in the county jail for a term not more than one year, or in the state prison.

Now those are just few of the state penal codes that I came up with for the moment and by doing a little research on my own (I can’t afford a $250/hr lawyer for reading the same law books).

I haven ‘t touched in the areas of possible Federal statutes violation yet, here’re some of the applicable codes under the Title 18 of USC –Crimes and Criminal Procedures that could well apply to the ASA case on the Federal offense side for the feds to pursue.

□§31 Aircraft and Motor Vehicles
□§241 Civil Rights
□§371 Conspiracy
□§641 Embezzlement and Theft
□§1001 Fraud and False Statements
□§1231 Labor
□§1341 Mail Fraud
□§1421 Nationality and Citizenship
□§1821 Professions and Occupations
□§1951 Racketeering
□§2071 Records and Reports

You want me to go on?……yah thought so.

Most of the above offenses if not all are felony offences each carrying one or more years of imprisonment if convicted. In the ASA case, if the DA is successful in achieving even one criminal conviction, that will land over 100 years in jail time for those convicted. (each one count x number of victims/students and you get the figure)

What needed to achieve a conviction requires only two things like everything else in everyone’s life, desire and strong enough intention (will) to carry it out, the rest will follow.

So far all seems to be lacking at both the DA’s office and the Sheriff’s department of Merced County. If they need to bring in an aggressive outside prosecutor, I know the one from the East Coast who’s not so long ago decided to take an unscheduled retirement for some personal reasons . Hint…… last name begins with “S” and his last job was a state governor.
As far as I know he’s still unemployed at present.

Echo Yankee, over & out!