Federal worker cut air traffic communications with planes

first_imgHONOLULU (AP) — A former Federal Aviation Administration employee has been fined $5,000 and put on two years of probation for cutting communication between air traffic controllers and planes flying above Honolulu in early 2019. The two-minute outage affected communication with about 10 planes. Joelyn DeCosta was sentenced this week by a federal judge after she pleaded guilty to maliciously interfering with a federal communication system. Prosecutors say that in a plea deal, DeCosta is quitting her job and forfeits retirement benefits worth more than $500,000. According to court documents, DeCosta severed main and standby communication lines in two separate incidents on Jan. 4, 2019. Prosecutors said pilots couldn’t hear instructions from controllers for two minutes.last_img