New data published by the UK Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) appears to confirm the widespread view among executive charter operators that few people are prosecuted for illegally flying for hire in Britain. Between April 1, 2011, and March 31, 2012, the CAA pursued 16 prosecutions for various breaches of UK aviation rules, only one of which was for illegally conducting a public-transport flight without holding an air operator certificate (AOC).
Analysis of data for the previous six years shows that the CAA achieved only eight prosecutions for various forms of illegal charter activity, which also included operating a U.S.-registered aircraft for hire in the UK without permission. The latest CAA prosecutions data provides far more detail on cases than in previous years.
Records of last year’s sole successful prosecution for illegal charter show that between January 2010 and March 2010, Mark Eddleston “acted as pilot-in-command of passenger-carrying flights in N-registered and G-registered aircraft” despite the fact that he did not hold an AOC and an appropriate pilot certificate.