Mechanic Sentenced for Fraud, Money Laundering

 - December 17, 2008, 10:18 AM

On December 3, Robert Schlotzhauer of Lee’s Summit, Mo., was sentenced to 12 months home confinement and ordered to pay a $550,000 fine and $63,854 in restitution to Rainbow Air of Niagara Falls, N.Y. According to the U.S. attorney for the Western District of Missouri, in April 2001 Schlotzhauer purchased a wrecked McDonnell Douglas 369E helicopter then bought another wrecked 369E that had been submerged in the Pacific Ocean near Australia after an accident. Schlotzhauer took components from the first 369E and installed them in the ocean-damaged 369E then sold the resulting helicopter to Rainbow Air. He also repaired and returned to service a compressor from the ocean-damaged helicopter’s engine, then sold it, claiming it had been involved in a hard landing. The court ordered Schlotzhauer to liquidate any assets in Falcon Helicopter and Lee’s Summit Turbine and surrender his FAA A&P and IA certificates and “refrain from any involvement in the business of maintaining, repairing or rebuilding aircraft.”