Boeing agrees to pay over $2.5 bil. in fines

The US Department of Justice says Boeing has agreed to pay over 2.5 billion dollars in fines to resolve a criminal charge in connection with two fatal 737 MAX airplane crashes.

The crashes in Indonesia and Ethiopia in 2018 and 2019 killed a total of 346 people.

A US Congress report concluded that Boeing was aware of defects in a system that stabilized the plane in flight but did not report them to authorities.

The department said in a statement on Thursday that Boeing had agreed to pay penalties of over 2.5 billion dollars, including compensation for the victims.

The statement said that the crashes "exposed fraudulent and deceptive conduct by employees of one of the world commercial airplane manufacturers."

The department said that "Boeing's employees chose the path of profit over candor."

Boeing CEO David Calhoun said in a note to employees that "this resolution is a serious reminder to all of us of how critical our obligation of transparency to regulators is."

Commercial flights of the 737 MAX resumed last month, after the planes were grounded almost two years ago.