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Press Release

Former Cushing Resident Pleads Guilty to Making False Statements to the FAA and is Sentenced to Serve Five Years Probation and 180 Days Home Confinement

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Western District of Oklahoma
Defendant Also Ordered to Forfeit $42,000 to the United States and Pay $43,000 Restitution to Victim

Oklahoma City, Oklahoma – At a combined change of plea and sentencing hearing Thursday, LARRY DALE MORGAN, 70, of Fort Worth, Texas, and formerly of Cushing, Oklahoma, pleaded guilty to knowingly making false statements to the Federal Aviation Administration ("FAA") and was sentenced to serve five years probation and 180 days of home confinement, announced Mark A. Yancey, Acting United States Attorney for the Western District of Oklahoma. In addition, Morgan was ordered to forfeit $42,000 to the United States and pay $43,000 in restitution to the victim of the offense.

As background,  the FAA requires "traceability" of all aircraft and aircraft parts, requiring that any inspections, repairs, overhaul, maintenance, or changes in the physical condition of aircraft or aircraft parts be detailed in logbooks that accompany an aircraft throughout its use.  The FAA and the aviation industry rely upon the accuracy of these records to determine the airworthiness, maintenance history, and value of an aircraft. In order to ensure aircraft safety, the FAA also requires that anyone wishing to perform a major aircraft or component modification receive FAA approval. 

According to the Superseding Indictment filed on January 6, 2015, Morgan, formerly a pilot in Cushing, Oklahoma, responded to an advertisement in Fall of 2010 and traded his Beechcraft Bonanza aircraft for a Cessna aircraft owned by a person in upstate New York.  As part of that transaction, it was alleged that Morgan made a series of false entries into the Beechcraft’s log books, submitted a fraudulent bill of sale falsely representing that he was the aircraft’s sole owner, and inflated the aircraft’s value.  Following discovery of problems with the Beechcraft, making it inoperable, and falsified entries in its logbook entries, the FAA grounded the plane due to safety concerns.   Morgan was charged with five counts of wire fraud, two counts of false statements involving aircraft parts, and making false statements to the FAA. 

At the plea hearing, Morgan pleaded guilty to Count 8 and specifically admitted that he falsified an Aircraft Bill of Sale in which he listed himself as the sole owner of the Beechcraft Bonanza, well knowing that the aircraft was in fact co-owned by the Bank of Cushing.

This case is the result of an investigation by the United States Department of Transportation, Office of the Inspector General.   It was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Julia E. Barry.

Updated January 29, 2016

Public Corruption