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BREAKING: Emiliano Sala flight organiser David Henderson handed prison sentence

Cardiff Crown Court heard that David Henderson, 67, put business first by employing ill-qualified Mr Ibbotson to pilot the Argentine striker, who had recently signed for Cardiff City

David Henderson has been sentenced to 18 months in prison

David Henderson, the businessman convicted over organising the flight that crashed into the English Channel killing footballer Emiliano Sala, has been sentenced at Cardiff Crown Court to 18 months in prison.

Cardiff Crown Court heard that David Henderson, 67, put business first by employing ill-qualified Mr Ibbotson to pilot the newly-signed Cardiff City striker to Nantes and back in January 2019.

Henderson’s lawyer has said his legal team will consider an appeal against his conviction.

Andrew Shanahan, of Shanahan’s Solicitors, said: “Now that the case is concluded in the crown court, Mr Henderson wishes to formally pay his respects to the families of Emiliano Sala and David Ibbotson.

“It is important to point out that the Civil Aviation Authority have always accepted that the way in which the flight was arranged and operated did not cause the aircraft to crash.

“In due course the coroner at the inquest will make the ultimate decision about what caused the crash, but a report prepared by the Air Accident Investigation Branch suggests that a failure of part of the aircraft exhaust system led to Mr Ibbotson becoming incapacitated and thereby unable to maintain control of the aircraft.

“The Civil Aviation Authority have always accepted that the aircraft was properly maintained, and therefore any defect was not known or foreseen by Mr Henderson.

“We will now be considering whether to appeal against the conviction and/or sentence.”

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