VNA recruitment under scrutiny after pilot found using unqualified license

TN News

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Vietnam's aviation authorities Friday said they will inspect the pilot recruitment and training process of national carrier Vietnam Airlines following suspicions that one of its former pilots used an unqualified license, the Tuoi Tre newspaper reported.

The Civil Aviation Authority of Vietnam (CAAV) have also started reviewing the qualifications of Kim Tae Hun, a South Korean pilot who quit Vietnam Airlines in August, in response to the request of South Korean aviation authorities.

So far only South Korean aviation authorities have made such a request, it said.

CAAV has sent letters to Indonesian aviation authorities, which granted license to Kim, and Indonesian Batavia Air, where he worked before Vietnam Airlines, to request confirmation about his working time and flying hours, it reported.

Kim is suspected of using an unqualified license and of having lied about his flying hours, news website VnExpress reported on Thursday.

The suspicions were raised in local Korean media in October after he failed to make a smooth landing when he was the co-pilot for a Vietnam Airlines flight in April.

Lai Xuan Thanh, deputy chief of CAAV, told Tuoi Tre that the flight with 154 passengers left Ho Chi Minh City on April 25 and arrived at Busan-based Gimhae International Airport the next day.

After Kim failed to land properly, Captain Vuong Van My took over the controls, Thanh said.

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Following the incident, the national carrier reviewed the qualifications of the flight's pilot team and reported the matter to aviation authorities in both South Korea and Vietnam as required, it said in a press release issued Thursday.

The Korean pilot then asked for permission to return to his previous airline in Indonesia for confirmation of his qualifications, but he did not return to the Vietnamese carrier later, Vietnam Airlines said.

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