Fraud investigators have arrested a suspect in the fake engine parts scandal that impacted airlines like United and Delta

Fraud investigators have arrested a suspect in the fake engine parts scandal that impacted airlines like United and Delta
  • Regulators say AOG Technics used false documentation to supply engine parts of an unknown origin.

  • American, Delta, and United are among the airlines who've found parts from the company in their engines.

  • The UK's Serious Fraud Office arrested an individual and seized material on Wednesday.

A person has been arrested as part of an investigation into AOG Technics, the company accused of supplying suspicious engine parts to airlines, the UK's Serious Fraud Office (SFO) announced Wednesday.

According to Bloomberg, the person in custody is AOG Technics' founder and director, Jose Alejandro Zamora Yrala. Business Insider reached out to the SFO for confirmation on this but didn't immediately hear back. AOG Technics could not be reached by BI.

"This investigation deals with very serious allegations of fraud involving the supply of aircraft parts, the consequences of which are potentially far-reaching," said Nick Ephgrave, the SFO director.

"We are determined to establish the facts as swiftly as possible," he added.

The SFO said it raided the Greater London home of the suspect and seized material as part of its investigation.

Aviation authorities in the US, UK, and European Union all issued alerts about AOG Technics earlier this year.

The EU's Aviation Safety Agency said that it suspected the company used false documentation for engine parts of an unknown origin.

It left repair shops and airlines scouring their records to find references to AOG Technics.

All three of the major US airlines — Delta, United, and American — are among those who have found parts supplied by AOG Technics in their engines.

Some airlines in the US and UK were forced to ground planes because of the scandal. The Independent previously reported that at least 100 planes were grounded.

Last week, Ryanair's CEO told Bloomberg that it too had discovered suspect parts during scheduled maintenance checks.

Southwest was the first major carrier to disclose that it had found parts from AOG Technics in its engines, back in September.

"In an abundance of caution, we made an immediate decision to promptly replace those parts on that single engine," a spokesperson previously told BI.

The faulty parts were used for CFM56 engines, which power older-generation Airbus A320 and Boeing 737 jets.

Bloomberg reports that the CFM56 is by far the most frequently flown engine, with an aircraft powered by it taking off every two seconds around the world.

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