Former BA commercial director facing criminal charges

Former British Airways commercial director Martin George is facing criminal charges and up to four years in prison for his part in the price-fixing scandal that has led to a £270m fine.

George is being investigated alongside former BA head of communications Iain Burns. They left the carrier last October, and are believed to be central to the case that saw BA and Virgin Atlantic fix fuel surcharges for 18 months from August 2004.

The Office of Fair Trading (OFT) says it is carrying an “ongoing investigation” into the price-fixing case and is considering criminal charges. Both men have previously denied any wrongdoing.

The OFT’s powers to investigate the case arise from the 2002 Enterprise Act. At the time of his resignation, George sent a letter to BA’s chairman Martin Broughton, which stated that while he was not involved there may have been “inappropriate conversations” within his department that violated policy on long-haul fuel surcharges. George was replaced by director of planning Robert Boyle.

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