Pi­lot probed over re­port­edly mis­us­ing equip­ment: MND

The China Post - - LOCAL - BY JOSEPH YEH

An Army he­li­copter pi­lot who was ac­cused of bring­ing his flight hel­met home and let­ting it be worn by his girl­friend has been grounded pending in­ves­ti­ga­tions, the Min­istry of Na­tional De­fense (MND) said yes­ter­day.

The Army is still prob­ing the case and will levy a harsh pun­ish­ment if probe re­sults show that the pi­lot did vi­o­late re­lated reg­u­la­tions to bring home the hel­met with­out a su­pe­rior’s con­sent, mil­i­tary of­fi­cials said yes­ter­day.

The MND’s re­mark came af­ter a lo­cal news­pa­per yes­ter­day said the pi­lot, sur­named Huang, of the Army Avi­a­tion Spe­cial Forces 602nd Brigade, vi­o­lated re­lated rules in do­ing so back in Au­gust 2013.

The case came un­der me­dia spot­light in the wake of the re­cent high-pro­file Apache photo scan­dal.

It was dis­cov­ered that Apache he­li­copter pi­lot Lt. Col. Lao Naicheng ( ) of the Army Avi­a­tion Spe­cial Forces 601st Brigade took a group of 26 rel­a­tives and friends on a tour of his base in Long­tan Dis­trict in Taoyuan on March 29.

With­out his su­pe­ri­ors’ ap­proval, Lao al­legedly gave his vis­i­tors ac­cess to a han­gar on the base that houses AH-64E Apaches and even al­lowed them to board one of the chop­pers and take pho­tos.

It was also later found that Lao had not re­turned an Apache flight hel­met af­ter a train­ing mission last Oc­to­ber but had worn it as part of a Hal­loween cos­tume at a party at his home.

Mil­i­tary of­fi­cials and pros­e­cu­tors are now prob­ing Lao’s al­leged role in the case.

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