Skip to comments.Ex-Boeing employee is charged in vandalism case
Posted on 08/02/2008 5:18:39 AM PDT by A.A. Cunningham
Ex-Boeing employee is charged in vandalism case
By: Timothy Logue , email@example.com
A former Boeing Co. aircraft mechanic is facing up to 10 years in prison and $500,000 in fines and restitution for severing a bundle of wires on a Chinook helicopter. Advertisement
Matthew Kevin Montgomery of Trevose was formally charged Thursday with a felony count of willfully damaging property under contract to the federal government.
Montgomery, 33, severed a "two-inch bundle of over 150 electrical wires running between the cockpit and body" of the $23.8 million helicopter, according to a federal charging document. Some of the wires were linked to the Chinook's avionics and flight control systems.
"This case is not about mere vandalism," said Acting U.S. Attorney Laurie Magid. "It involves damage to property that is vital to our military. Any action that delays delivery of material or that endangers the integrity of Army aircraft affects the safety of the men and women who are serving our country, and will not be tolerated."
Montgomery is believed to have cut the wires May 10, his last day on the Chinook assembly line. The damage on the nearly-completed helicopter was discovered two days later as Montgomery was beginning his new job on the V-22 Osprey line.
A former member of United Aerospace Workers Local 1069, Montgomery was making $19 an hour prior to his arrest.
"Fortunately, this senseless act of vandalism was discovered quickly and no physical harm occurred to personnel as a result," said Ed Bradley, special agent-in-charge of Defense Criminal Investigative Service, the investigative arm of the Inspector General of the Department of Defense. "However, the potential threat to safety from such acts is serious and therefore such cases must be aggressively investigated and prosecuted."
Montgomery's attorney, public defender Mara Meehan, said she would push for leniency at sentencing if he pleads guilty or is convicted.
"Matthew has no priors, is working full-time right now and I am hoping to argue for a non-custodial sentence," she said.
Her client faces a maximum possible sentence of 10 years in prison, a $250,000 fine, three years supervised release, a $100 special assessment and restitution of more than $250,000.
In May, a federal judge ordered Montgomery to undergo a psychiatric evaluation and have no contact with Boeing or its employees.
While she would not speculate on Montgomery's motives, Meehan said the severed wires posed "... no risk of injury because, as I understand it, the helicopter would never (have been) able to take off."
Boeing had to remove, replace, reinstall and retest all the wires and systems relating to that set of wires and closed the plant for its investigation, costing the company more than $100,000.
Bradley said the investigation continues and a reward still stands for information leading to the arrest of the person or persons responsible for damaging the transmission of a second Chinook.
Montgomery has denied involvement. "There is no evidence whatsoever that he did anything to another aircraft," Meehan said.
It was sabotage.
And if your client had done this during WWII,sweetie,he would have been put up against the wall.And that nation would have cheered.
You got it,pal.
You gotta love unions.
So if the sabotaged helicopter injures or kills its passengers and crew on the ground, it's OK by this public defender?
Your compassion is showing.
He needs to take helo ride, and be let out at 10,000 ft.
Calling this vandalism lessens the crime, this was sabotage, thank God they caught him before he sabo’d an Osprey.
The punishment for sabotage during time of war is 30 years. Maybe the reason they can’t charge it is because the damned idiots in Congress has never formally declared war.
18 U.S.C. § 2156. Production of defective national-defense material, national-defense premises, or national-defense utilities
(a) Whoever, with intent to injure, interfere with, or obstruct the national defense of the United States, willfully makes, constructs, or attempts to make or construct in a defective manner, any national-defense material, national-defense premises or national-defense utilities, or any tool, implement, machine, utensil, or receptacle used or employed in making, producing, manufacturing, or repairing any such national-defense material, national-defense premises or national-defense utilities, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than ten years, or both.
This sounds like a union thing... Bill the union too...
Time to change that law.
Willful vandalism of material destined for Military personnell should be capital offense.
Upon conviction there should be only one sentence, death.
It's not like he was the New York Times publishing leaked Classified Information, or anything.
Take him up and toss him out. No chute.
This sounds quite serious. Possibly like the kind of problem in which a Chinook can take off before suffering a catastrophic MLF.
Perhaps Mr. Mongomery could be in the "loop" here too, and might like to trade a few decades worth of additional incarceration for some info?
As a Navy and Marine Dad, I'd like to volunteer for Mongomery's jury.
If he pleads or is convicted he deserves a max sentence no matter how much sobbing Ms. Meehan does.