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-   -   CASA spends millions chasing Milton Jones aviation business (https://www.pprune.org/pacific-general-aviation-questions/474319-casa-spends-millions-chasing-milton-jones-aviation-business.html)

1a sound asleep 15th Jan 2012 01:49

CASA spends millions chasing Milton Jones aviation business
Cookies must be enabled | The Australian

Mr Jones, a Northern Territory cattleman and charter helicopter baron, has spent nine months attempting to derail Civil Aviation Safety Authority attempts to lay charges over his antics, screened on hit Channel Ten program Keeping Up With the Joneses last year.

The series, a docudrama about Mr Jones's family life on a 400,000 ha cattle station, also showed Mr Jones using a helicopter to tow his waterskiing teenage son which, if proven, could carry a two-year jail term.

CASA needs the unedited footage to prove the events actually occurred and were not confected for entertainment value. But the show's Melbourne-based producer, WTFN, refused to provide the video, prompting a CASA raid to seize the videos on March 1 last year.

n an affidavit sworn on March 1, CASA investigator Mark Haslam alleged Mr Jones may have committed numerous offences including consuming alcohol within eight hours of flying, in defiance of civil aviation regulations.

Mr Haslam also alleged Mr Jones used two helicopters to collect crocodile eggs without a commercial licence, also punishable with two years' jail.

Mr Jones was also suspected of picking up a passenger mid-flight and leaving his helicopter unattended with the engine and rotors turning, including on one occasion when there appeared to be "children in helicopter when engine started - no pilot at controls".

Mr Jones declined to comment yesterday, other than to say "we don't deny anything because we haven't been charged with anything yet".

Last year asked about the waterskiing incident, he said the CASA investigation was a "witch hunt" and he was "just having a bit of fun" with the 15-year-old boy.

"It was perfectly safe. I've been flying for 20 years and am very experienced," he told the NT News.

Mr Jones's North Australian Helicopters has a fleet of 41 aircraft running sightseeing flights as well as charters for mustering and government work in the NT and north Queensland.

Sarcs 15th Jan 2012 03:59

I thought that investigation (like so many others) had fizzled out! Sounds like Milt might have their measure.

allthecoolnamesarego 15th Jan 2012 05:02

IF he is proven do have done those things, then he is obviously too stupid to hold a licence (which comes with rights and responsibities) then throw the book at him. Doing them is one thing, being filmed for national TV is another!!

Kharon 15th Jan 2012 06:08

Eh hem
Those are 'our' millions. Great return on the tax dollars. :ugh:

Give that man a ceegar.

aroa 15th Jan 2012 06:29

Taxpayers dollars
When certain CASA persons get "a flea in the ear" about someone, then the requirements regarding expenditure of the taxpayers money as per the "code of conduct" and the CAC Act just go flying out the window.

Rotary winger JQ, his losses aside, can be added to the wastage of funds in pursuit of a "nothing".Half a million of taxpayers, and counting is it? And to what end ?.
Expensive way of demonstrating that Richard Craniums Rule!! :mad:

Since there is no managerial oversight to pull RCs into line, or worries about the costs involved, they are free to rampage the countryside and create whatever mayhem they like. Corrupted by unfettered power they damage both CASA and its "clients".

Sure seems a dumbar$e way to run (sic) an "Authority". :*

May the change be with us.

peterc005 15th Jan 2012 07:41

Jones looks like an accident waiting to happen.

It's one thing to do something stupid, but much worse to show no insight to capacity to change by saying things like "... I'm very experienced ..." (so it's ok).

CASA would most likely be saving his or someone else's life by taking his license.

allthecoolnamesarego 15th Jan 2012 08:15

God this place is full of whingers! Whinge if CASA do nothing, whinge if they do something.
From all accounts (video footage aired on TV) this guy has committed a number of offences. In order to give him a fair 'trial' an investigation MUST be conducted. Guess what folks, investigations cost money.
To what extent can someone break the rules (alleged) and get away with it, because "it would cost too much to investigate'?
Sure some might not be cost effective, but if you have someone possibly breaking a number of rules, telecast on national TV, and CASA DIDN'T investigate, that would be something to whinge about.
Justice must not only be done, it must be seen to be done.
I for one am happy for my tax dollars to be spent to investigate and charge or clear this guy.
Even if you hate CASA, please be objective enough to look at what it does objectively. Unfortunately we are a nation of 'black and white', there is often a shade if grey. Why can't we at least give credit where credit is due?

VH-MLE 15th Jan 2012 08:59

Even if you hate CASA, please be objective enough to look at what it does objectively. Unfortunately we are a nation of 'black and white', there is often a shade if grey. Why can't we at least give credit where credit is due?

I love the innocence of youth! Unfortunately "allthecoolnamesarego" in due course you will hopefully learn that this industry contains a disproportionate number of spiteful, venomous creatures - such as the usual "contributors" (and I use that term very loosely) to this thread.



puff 15th Jan 2012 09:46

allthecoolnamesarego - totally agree mate. We have a TV show where Mr Jones 'appears' to have broken several fairly strong rules, for which many other individuals out there have been prosecuted for. If CASA chooses to ignore something as obvious as regulations being broken on a primetime tv series, what does that say about them turning a blind eye when they can't see it on their 50 inch plasmas sitting at home !

There may be approvals in place by Mr Jones, and things may have been made to look different on the tv show than what happened, but surely if he has nothing to hide he shows the tapes and CASAs allegations are unfounded. How would you feel if you were prosecuted by CASA for an offence and a bloke doing it on tv gets away with it?

Seriously though, what happened to his 'control' of what went to air. I've spoken to a pilot involved in the US discovery series 'flying wild alaska', and part of the agreement the CEO of that company had was a total veto on what went to air in regards to anything to do with the operation of his a/c, not to cover up any dodgy ops, but to ensure that nothing that may have appeared dodgy went to air so they had no issues with the FAA.

Love the I'm very experienced line, no experienced pilot has ever died, you let the footage go to air you have to had expected the heat from the regulator !

Desert Flower 15th Jan 2012 09:55

"It was perfectly safe. I've been flying for 20 years and am very experienced,"
How many times have we heard these words before, only to read later where the sayer of them kills either himself or someone else? In my opinion, the guy's up himself!


allthecoolnamesarego 15th Jan 2012 10:20

Cheers Puff :)

MLE, thanks for the compliment re youth. Unfortunately my youth is on it's way out.... It is only through the "wisdom" ;) of age that I can now say I'm mature enough to look at actions for what they are, not for who has done them.

Shame we feel 'obliged' to stick with our prejiduces, despite facts to the contrary often staring us in the face

Ohhh for the innocence of youth...

SgtBundy 15th Jan 2012 10:57

I've spoken to a pilot involved in the US discovery series 'flying wild alaska', and part of the agreement the CEO of that company had was a total veto on what went to air in regards to anything to do with the operation of his a/c, not to cover up any dodgy ops, but to ensure that nothing that may have appeared dodgy went to air so they had no issues with the FAA.
They may need to be more careful. Last episode I watched they were talking about VFR flying and rules for visibility when they flew straight on into cloud (in mountainous terrain) trying to push on to the next snow strip. The pilot was visibly alarmed but kept going, and was lucky to find a hole in the cloud to put down though. Maybe it was made to look more dramatic than it actually was, but my first thought it was a bit risky to broadcast it just from a CYA point of view.

gobbledock 15th Jan 2012 11:21

I think Jones and those who have the purported evidence take a leaf out of the regulators book and play cat and mouse with them. Hide or destroy any evidence in your possession, do whatever it takes to deflect, spin, obsfucate, anything basically as long as you don't get caught.
That's what CASA do when it suits them so you may as well follow their example. Give them nothing, make it as hard for them to ping you as possible, pay off an eye witness if you have to, it is worth it. They don't play by the rule book so neither should Jones. If he is smart he should know by now that they are out to hang him my any means available. Fight fire with fire.

Whether this guy is right or wrong I don't give a sh#t any more to be honest. CASA can't be trusted so it is time the entire aviation community went to ground and do a 'hear no evil see no evil', don't communicate with them, report, advise, update or inform them if you can avoid it. They will only burn or destroy you. They can't be trusted and are not interested in fairness so it is time to go to ground and be as uncooperative as humanly possible.

To all CASA I give you the 'one finger salute'!

VH-MLE 15th Jan 2012 13:33


On the other side of the coin, I'm sure many in CASA would say to you - go forth and multiply...


Jabawocky 15th Jan 2012 21:26

In my opinion gobble dock is mostly correct and unfortunately CASA deserve what they get. They can't be trusted as has been shown before.

The issue I see here is this Jones case is actually a product of CASA and their lack of doing the job properly.

With reference to my previous posts about CASA despite many good folk doing a very good job, there is a cultur amongst some that is all about mounting trophies on their walls rather than being an out there in the trenches working side by side with the industry. As I have said before the field folk should be educators not prosecutors, they should be welcome to wander into any operation just like your best mate.

Can you imagine a relationship with a local CASA man and Mr Jones where jones gets this gig offer from a tv mob and he phones up Mr Smith the local CASA dude and says, "hey Smithy, would you mind dropping in some time this week, this tv mob want a film done and they want to shoot some wild chopper stuff, I want you to be involved so it is done with safety in mind but right up to the edge of the rules, the script calls for some stuff that might upset people in your head office, and the beers are on me, see ya Friday arv"

Instead, my guess is the CASA folk would have known what was going on but let it sail through so that they could skin him alive later.

Big difference in the two philosophies of running the business. Now which system will have a better safety outcome, the one hypothetical above, or the one we have which justly motivates the kind of response gobble dock mentions in going to ground.

Too much strict liability and all that stuff and not enough real safety.

Capt Fathom 15th Jan 2012 22:29

Aviation in Australia is in a sorry state. The reason, CASA.

They provide limited mentoring to the industry. They provide no encouragement or support.

They produce mountains of useless regulations, then police it using their unlimited funds.

They must spend hours watching TV and Youtube in search of victims.

I shudder to think the number of individuals and companies, both large and small, sent to the wall by their bureaucratic processes!

They need to distance themselves from the Canberra mentality, and get out into the real Australia and help!

Jabawocky 16th Jan 2012 00:54

Ahhh your mind needs de-casa-izing :eek:

What that means is the Jones case has come about because of the kind of organisation CASA have become over many many years. The fact they have acted like rogues with scant respect for the regulations is a by product of CASA not doing their job properly.

Lets face it, in my hypothetical story above, can you really imagine any operator cordially inviting the local CASA FOI into their fold to work on such a plan? I doubt it, and from what I hear up north, not in your life!!

On the other hand I have seen some very good pro-active efforts from within CASA in particular the new GA Task force and the guy heading that up. I surely hope he is not the one who is grinding the axe on a nail Jones at all expense program. The problem however will have had its roots long before Peter John was given this job to do so maybe he is handed a poisoned chalice in this case. I have no idea who is responsible for such cases as the Jones case.

If the CASA was built around a different philosophy, safety would be improved, and would grow organically rather than being synthetically injected into us all.

Ex FSO GRIFFO 16th Jan 2012 02:42

In 'another era', many a 'problem' has been avoided / solved over a beer on a Friday evening at the local aero club, with the local 'Examiner of Airmen' of the day, and some instructors / pilots where definite education of 'boundaries' were discussed / drawn, and in general, pro-active 'safety issues' freely discussed.

A bit like having a 'quiet lunch' these days - or 'a friendly visit', 'tea and bikkies' - 'hats orf' - on some ocassions...(?)

Doesn't seem to happen any more.

I've seen 'our local bloke' twice in 20 years and that was only to say 'G'day' in passing.

What happened to being a PART OF the industry..??
As distinct from being 'apart from' the industry..??

Cheers :(

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