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Boeing will pay $200 million over 737 Max crashes to settle SEC charges : NPR

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Justin Tallis/AFP via Getty Images

side view of a Boeing 737 Max airplane

Justin Tallis/AFP via Getty Images

Boeing has agreed to pay a $200 million penalty to settle Securities and Exchange Commission charges that the company misled investors and the public about the safety of the 737 Max after two of the planes crashed in 2018 and 2019, killing 346 people.

The SEC charged the Boeing company and its former CEO, Dennis Muilenburg, with “making materially misleading public statements” following the crashes.

Investigators found that both crashes were caused in part by a flawed automated flight control system called MCAS. The SEC says after the first crash in Indonesia in October of 2018, Boeing and then-CEO Muilenburg “knew that MCAS posed an ongoing airplane safety issue, but nevertheless assured the public that the 737 Max airplane was ‘as safe as any that has ever flown the skies’.”

“In times of crisis and tragedy, it is especially important that public companies and executives provide full, fair, and truthful disclosures to the markets,” says SEC Chair Gary Gensler in a statement. “The Boeing Company and its former CEO, Dennis Muilenburg, failed in this most basic obligation.”

Muilenburg has agreed to pay a $1 million penalty to settle the charges against him.

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