View Full Version : Assault-case pilot fights for job
5th Nov 2004, 16:52
Sat "New Zealand Herald"
Assault-case pilot fights for job
By PHIL TAYLOR
An Air New Zealand captain with two assault convictions and one crash on his record is fighting to get his pilot's job back.
The Employment Relations Authority expects to issue its decision next week on whether the airline must reinstate Grant Craigie pending a full hearing next year on his personal grievance complaint. He alleges he was unfairly dismissed.
Mr Craigie, 46, who captained 737 aircraft for Air New Zealand, has not flown for the airline since February 2002. He would have to go through retraining before he was allowed to fly commercial planes again.
Mr Craigie is certificated by the Civil Aviation Authority to fly other aircraft, including 747-400s, which can carry 382 passengers.
Until he was sacked in September, Mr Craigie had worked for Air New Zealand since 1988.
He went on sick leave for almost a year, returning in February 2003 with a medical opinion that cleared him to fly. His sick leave followed an incident understood to have involved a birdstrike.
But Air New Zealand subsequently began a disciplinary investigation into Mr Craigie's suitability for the job, apparently having learned of his convictions.
In 1996, a district court judge bonded him to keep the peace for 12 months on charges of assault and wilful damage. He pleaded guilty to three other charges, including possession of a weapon.
In December 2002, he was found guilty of assault in relation to another incident. He was fined $650 and ordered to pay court costs.
In the same month, he was found guilty of five charges involving flying a home-built amphibian plane he'd bought knowing it did not have current airworthiness documentation.
On one of these flights, the flying boat's undercarriage failed to lock and Mr Craigie made an emergency landing back in New Plymouth.
Mr Craigie gave evidence of hearing a clunk while flying solo. He realised there was a landing gear problem and, finding a screwdriver, pulled up the floorboards and repaired the undercarriage to land safely.
An aircraft maintenance engineer, giving evidence for Mr Craigie, described it as "probably the most magnificent flying I've ever seen".
Judge Thomas Everitt fined Mr Craigie $3600, commenting he would be lenient because the offending fell at the lower end of the scale.
But the judge said he found Mr Craigie, in giving evidence, to be "garrulous and generalised" which was the opposite of what he would expect from a man of professional experience.
In 2000, Mr Craigie, with his two children as passengers, crashed his Cessna, misjudging a landing on a Northland topdressing strip. The plane was destroyed but no one was seriously injured.
Following Mr Craigie's second assault conviction, CAA investigated whether he was a "fit and proper person" under the Civil Aviation Act 1990 to hold his pilot's licence.
In his report, dated April 2003, the investigator recommended that Mr Craigie did not meet the criteria to hold a licence to fly passengers for an airline. But the CAA director did not accept the recommendation and took no action.
Air New Zealand subsequently began an investigation, which led to Mr Craigie's dismissal.
Mr Craigie alleges bias against him and claims 19 other Air New Zealand pilots have incidents on their work records involving drinking and/or fighting.
5th Nov 2004, 23:31
I am going to hope that NOBODY even attempts at trying to post an opinion on this one way or the other, when it is based on an editors view of a journalists view of a courts view of a lawyers view of a witnesses view of a pilot.
Unless you are from Channel 7,9 or 10 .... THEN I know there will be no stopping you.
6th Nov 2004, 00:02
Airline pilots are generally expected to exhibit a standard of behaviour somewhat better than this.
This agro @<hidden> should get a job bouncing instead of flying. He might be happier there as he will get to bash regularly.
Another hairy-footed, angry, little hobbit with small-elf syndrome... :rolleyes: He's giving pilots a bad name.
I hope he doesn't ba-aaaaaaaash his 'wives'.
6th Nov 2004, 00:55
I won't comment on this person in particular but as I have said before it is a dangerous precident being set in New Zealand when the CAA sits down with your details and ascertains whether you have the right to have a pilot's licence and therefore a career or not. We are not talking about a court case or any formal assessment, we are talking about a man with a coffee and 5 minutes to spare having a quick look at your file and your two speeding convictions (112 and 117 kph on an empty Canterbury back country road) and pulling your pilots licence.
In this case I don't know whether his mentioning of 19 other pilots that have convictions and are still holding flying jobs with AirNZ would be pleasing any of them either.:confused:
6th Nov 2004, 01:57
Well so much for that.:rolleyes:
6th Nov 2004, 03:30
Whilst agreeing that it is unfair to comment on this case due to the lack of verification of the facts :confused: it does raise an interesting legal issue or three. Under CASA rules there is a mechanism which requires a person to be " a fit & proper" person to be a CFI or CP but I don't know if there is for licence issue. This has brought CASA unstuck in a few cases over the years.
I understand that in the US a DUI offence can impact on your FAA Pilot "certificate", can someone confirm this?
6th Nov 2004, 03:52
Aus. CASA can get you too:
CIVIL AVIATION REGULATIONS 1988
- REG 5.09 Flight crew licence: issue and refusal
Subject to subregulation (2), CASA must issue a flight crew licence to an applicant if, and only if, the applicant:
possesses a knowledge of the English language that is sufficient to enable him or her to exercise safely the authority given by the licence; and
is qualified to hold the licence; and
is a fit and proper person to hold the licence.
CASA must not issue a licence to a person if the person:
has knowingly or recklessly made a false or misleading statement in relation to the person's application for a licence; or
does not satisfy the requirements of subregulation (1).
In deciding whether an applicant for a licence is a fit and proper person to hold the licence, CASA must only take into account:
any action taken by CASA, or a responsible organisation, in relation to any authority to perform duties essential to the operation of an aircraft during flight time that was given to the applicant by CASA, or the organisation; and
any other matter that relates to the safety of air navigation.
An applicant for a licence must disclose to CASA information of which the applicant is aware and that is relevant to a matter that CASA must take into account under subregulation (3).
Penalty: 25 penalty units.
For subregulation (4), strict liability applies to the physical element that CASA must take the matter into account under subregulation (3).
Pinky the pilot
6th Nov 2004, 05:42
Don't know about the US but was told by a legal type many moons ago that if you do your drivers licence through DUI here in South Oz that your Pilots Licence goes with it!
Would effect a few ex Balus drivers I met over the years!!
You only live twice. Once when
you're born. Once when
you've looked death in the face.
6th Nov 2004, 06:59
Exactly what "standard of behaviour" are airline pilots expected to "generally" display then?
Do you know the factual circumstances leading to these convictions? I seriously doubt it.
Have you never made a single error that brought you before the law in your whole life? If not then I suggest that you live a bit more.
If this guy has the physical aviation skills to be a jet captain then let him have it I say. The fact he may have smacked some deserving prat in the teeth and got a conviction for it has nothing to do with his ability to drive a jet. At least he has some balls and grit about him. That can actually be very handy when the world goes pear shaped.
Assault is any physical application of force. Blowing cigarette smoke in someone's face can be described as "assault" according to the letter of the law. There is no automatic relationship between having a minor conviction and being a bad pilot so wake up to yourself.
You sound like a sheltered little girl who needs to get a better grip on life to me. Twit.
6th Nov 2004, 07:49
Thanks lambsie that saves me looking it up.:O So how does CASA, the AAT and a court decide who is "fit and proper". Not many of us would be fit according to the stats.:rolleyes:
It must be measured against a generally accepted community standard or by precedence in court. A little like an offence against public decency, a really interseting idea of a common set of standards. So if Mark Latham can punch a cabbie (right or wrong) he is still a fit & proper person to be leader of the opposition and potentially PM?
Over to you creampuff...
6th Nov 2004, 08:01
Well ginjockey, do you know the factual circumstances relating to his assault convictions? You reckon he blew smoke in someone's face, is that it? Ri-iiiiiiiiiiight...... :rolleyes:
"A single error"??? Well if he has TWO convictions for assault, that adds up to exactly, er, um... let me see..... TWO errors which brought him before the law, and for the SAME CRIME!! So either he is stupid (not a good quality for an airline pilot, I'm sure you agree) or he has no regard for the law. Perhaps, in your opinion, this is an acceptable quality for an airline pilot? Weird.
Assault, possession of a weapon, wilful damage, another assault, operating an aircraft without an Airworthiness Cert (FIVE counts!), CRASHING an aircraft. Yep none of that should stop him being employed in a position of responsibility such as AIRLINE PILOT, ginjockey, you're absolutely RIGHT!!! ..........................:rolleyes:
Enjoy your gin-jockeying. :eek:
PS ginjockey are you by any chance, a certain kiwi hobbit-ised agro biffo unemployed knucklehead meat-axe former 737 pilot????
6th Nov 2004, 09:06
There is one bit of the report that worries me ....
In the same month, he was found guilty of five charges involving flying a home-built amphibian plane he'd bought knowing it did not have current airworthiness documentation.
This shows a disrespect for the aviation legal requirements and yet no one else has picked up on this. Outside of his choosen profession I dont really care if he assults people regularly or not, there are laws to deal with that, but when someone responsible for a few hundred lives doesn't respect the relevent rules and regulations, particularly the safety related ones then I dont want to be on that aircraft.
That aside many companies have requirements that their employees do not bring the company into disrespect, and I would suggest that has occured.
Mr Cornhole appears to be in a hurry to depart the pages of Pprune..... can't happen to soon for me.
6th Nov 2004, 10:11
Can't stand the heat... getoutakitchen.
So then, you would naturally approve of paedophiles, rapists, and murderers being active airline pilots? I mean, if they have the skills, right? Just because they made one (or two) mistakes...
Grow up. As with any profession, there are expectations placed on those who pilot aircraft. It is part of being responsible for all those lives behind you.
I, for one, do not want to fly as a passenger with a pilot so lacking in self-control that he lashes out at people (twice).
It has nothing to do with "balls" or "grit", it takes more of those to NOT sink to the level of physical violence.
If you can't understand the concepts of responsibility and restraint, you don't deserve to be anywhere near a cockpit.
Cornholio 1 - ginjockey 0
Just as well that Captain (not very) Marvellous did that, now he won't see it when I point out what a complete d*ckhead he is... :}
6th Nov 2004, 20:42
with all this ignoring going on in lieu of more traditional forms of abuse, it's difficult to work out who's on which side of the argument.
but to answer feeton's deliberate provocation, the 5 counts of operating without CofA did NOT go un-noticed by all.
Can't believe we're all arguing over some silly s***p-shagging flossy-ba-aaaaaasher. I'm going looking for something better to argue over.
6th Nov 2004, 21:29
What about looking at it from a CRM perspective?
Who would want to be working with someone who may explode at any time? What do'es it do for intra-cockpit communications and the cockpit gradient? Surely I do'nt need to elaborate further!
What about the fun that could be had on overnights! I for one try and stay away from pub brawls on overnights, but with this guy by your side, you may very well be spending a long time in some asian jail, merely by association!!
Imagine this: "Hello ops, can you please send me a new Captain, the one I have is in hospital with multiple stab wounds"
Not for me thanks...
PS: Should he not be able to fly anymore, I am sure he will get work on the door at one of Oz's many nightclubs!!;)
Yep, ship him off to Oz, excellent idea...!!! :cool:
7th Nov 2004, 05:41
Flying an aircraft without the correct paperwork???
So nobody here came through GA then...
With the right/wrong lawyer you can be pinged for preventing a crime, detaining a criminal caught in the act or defending oneself.
We know too little about this case to offer any valid comment.
Too many armchair warriors here.
7th Nov 2004, 05:45
Yeah ok, I already used that one. But it just gets funnier and funnier, doesn't it??
7th Nov 2004, 07:50
They should give this guy a Freedom command. Given the low fares and associated lower socioeconomic passengers he could sort out the trouble makers (knuckle sandwich style).
Good for on time departures as he would most likely chuck the defect log out the window and go for it. I like his non-PC style, there are plenty of people on this earth that could do with a good thrashing and he sounds like he delivers.
Pilots are PIC not PC.
7th Nov 2004, 08:28
I just love all the sheep & hobbit jokes Cornholio, let's see, you must be:
a) A bitter & twisted ex-Ansett Australia employee still blaming all & sundry across the Tasman for the demise of your former employer
b) Someone who's wife/girlfriend/boyfriend ran off with a Kiwi
c) Another sad little battling digger suffering from a severe case of Inferioritus Australis
Why not just grow up & stay on the thread topic and take out your anguish somewhere else? Here's an idea, set up your own www.ihatenz.com site
In the meantime, regardless of whether this Air NZ captain is an innocent victim or not, I can sort of see the airline's point of view, it would be a public relations nightmare. Just imagine the media frenzy if this guy is allowed to keep his job.
7th Nov 2004, 09:06
I think the matter is sub judice is it not?
The existence of prior matters is irrelevant to any current charge except for issues of sentencing following a Court conviction.
Each allegation is heard on its merits in a Court free from hyperbole and vitreol, lucky poor chap is in the courts and not before the lot parading here for the most part.
Fit and Proper Person? - " .. traditionally, appropriate or suitable for a particular office or vocation". At law has no precise meaning other than the definition provided in the Act to which reference is made. No reference in the Act? Matter of Judicial Interpretation. You could go all the way to the High Court and back on this sort of issue.
The bloke has enough problems without you lot rabbiting on about them.
7th Nov 2004, 22:07
MOR and Cornhole,
We are not talking about child molestors or murderers so you can forget that entire blurb you serial tosser. We are talking about the grey area of physical assault. MOR, you have less than no idea of the facts, I don't know the facts myself but you are off and running about murder abnd child molestors and losing control and attacking people. Have a pill and lie down you excitable little child. Too much red cordial for you methinks.
I hhave no problem sharing a cockpit with a bloke with an assualt charge. Where do we draw the line? You probably think that if he got a parking ticket at the shops then he is a menace to society, have no regard for authority, flaunts the traffic act.......... take his licence off him. Divorced, probably a cheater who abused his wife............take his licence off him
Sorry girls but life has a way of getting in the way of your vision of a perfect little world. If some obnoxious yob was vulgar to my wife at a pub, he'd be getting my fist rammed into his teeth and to hell with the assault charge. What you you two ladies do...run out into the carpark in car there is trouble and someone tries to take your licence off you. "Sink to a level of violence"??
What sort of half baked little priss are you anyway?
Ginjockey - 3 Cornhole and girlfriend MOR - 1
8th Nov 2004, 05:16
With the greatest of respect, I wonder if this is what they might be driving at???
From the DAME's handbook:
Conduct Disorder (Antisocial Personality Disorder of Childhood)
The essential feature of conduct disorder is a repetitive and persistent pattern of behaviour
in which the basic rights of others or major societal norms or rules are violated. CASA will
not usually consider certification for a medical certificate to an applicant with a
substantiated history of conduct disorder.
Oppositional Defiant Disorder
The major feature of this condition is a recurrent pattern of negativistic, defiant,
disobedient or hostile behaviour towards authority figures that often develops gradually in
childhood and may continue into adolescence and even into adulthood. CASA will not
usually consider medical certification for an applicant with a substantiated history of
oppositional defiant disorder.
2.6.18 Impulse Control Disorders
The essential feature of impulse control disorders is failure to resist an impulse, drive, or
temptation to perform an act that is harmful to the person or to others. CASA will not
usually grant aeromedical certification to individuals who are diagnosed as suffering from
You sad little moron, you are a perfect example of all that is wrong with society.
There is no grey area surrounding physical assault. It is always unacceptable. The civilised world knows this. Only someone of your obviously deficient intellect needs to resort to his fists.
Your only response to an insult is to ram your fist into someones face? You are such a pathetic little specimen that words fail me.
When you grow up, and learn to act like an adult, you might be qualified to comment. Until then, why not keep your puerile little rants to yourself.
You are right, it is about drawing a line. Pity your line is down in the sewer.
8th Nov 2004, 09:05
Would the real WINSTUN please step forward....
8th Nov 2004, 10:46
Coming from someone who jockeys a gin, this response doesn't surprise me. When you get thumped, in a drunken haze, down at your local every Friday night, do you see this as a grey area? You talk about MY "girlfriend" then state:I hhave no problem sharing a cockpit with a bloke with an assualt charge. (Nice spelling) Not that there's anything wrong with your personal interests that, but some people get off on some pretty twisted stuff.... :yuk:
Would be amusing to watch 2 hairy-footed hobbits slugging it out in the cockpit.
8th Nov 2004, 21:00
Peace at last.
9th Nov 2004, 14:34
And just when it was getting interesting... ;)
What did you do, ban everybody? Sure has gone quiet in here... :=
10th Nov 2004, 09:52
Leaving aside the option of CASA to issue or cancel a licence on the grounds of some of those character traits mentioned earlier, would it also make the issuing of an ASIC card rather more difficult?