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Ukrainian Airlines: Class-action lawyer speaks to eTurboNews

Ukrainian Airlines: Class action lawyer speaks to eTurboNews

A class-action lawsuit against Ukrainian Airlines and others is about toe filed in Canada after 176 passengers were killed on PF752 over Iran. Who is responsible?  Who has to pay?

The Iranian Government, Ukraine International Airlines, Austrian Airlines, Lufthansa, Turkish Airlines, Qatar Airways, Aeroflot, and/or the U.S. Government. Record compensation for the families of airline passengers may be owed.

Mr. Tom Arndt at Himelfarb Proszanski law firm in Toronto, Canada, talked to eTurboNews publisher Juergen Steinmetz today. Mr. Arndt is one of the attorneys in a Canadian class-action lawsuit to be filed in Toronto for the victims in the Ukrainian Airlines flight shot down over Tehran, Iran.

Mr. Arndt summarized the issues on hand to eTurboNews:

  • Flight PS752 should not have taken off. It was only 4 hours after Iran fired missiles at US bases in Iraq.
  • Iran was totally prepared for US retaliation and full-fledged war.
  • The airline and aviation authorities should have banned all flights.
  • We have launched this class-action to bring justice and compensation to the families affected by this horrible tragedy.
  • We expect Iran and the Ukrainian airline to compensate the families for their loss. We cannot bring the passengers back, we wish we could. The brothers, sisters, mothers, daughters, fathers, sons, nieces, and nephews are not coming back. This lawsuit is what we can do to seek justice and compensation for their loss.
  • We wish to achieve justice and compensation on behalf of the passengers and their families.
  • Iran admitted it shot down the plane. That is a strong first step. The Ukrainian airline has yet to take responsibility. We intend to work through the courts to seek justice and compensation for the families. Many fine and good people around the world have started the process.
  • Think of the potential that was on that plane. It was all wiped out.
  • We cannot bring the victims back.
  • What we can do, is bring justice and compensation to their families and loved ones. This is our moment to help. This is how we can help.

Tom Arndt said: “We will go after the Iranian Government, the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, and Ukrainian International Airlines in this phase of our class-action lawsuit we are proposing to file here in Canada.”

“So many young doctors, medical students with big dreams, and families vanished on January 8, 2019, on their way from Iran to Ukraine and Canada. It’s not about the money, but we want to bring justice to the families involved.”

Himelfarb Proszanski is a highly-regarded downtown law firm in Toronto and is focused on helping clients face important issues. Founded in 1998 by Peter Proszanski and David Himelfarb, the firm concentrates on several areas of law including corporate, commercial, franchise, commercial litigation, mergers and acquisitions, insolvency, real estate, and insurance law.

Mr. Arndt said: “Ukraine Airlines flight PS752 took off from Teheran Airport on January 8 on tits way to Kiev. The aircraft followed their pre-determined standard flight path. This path took them over a sensitive military installation.”

Among the dead were 138 passengers returning to Canada, including 57 Canadian citizens. and non-Canadian citizens on this plane counted for students, doctors, and business travelers returning to Canada.

Iran ultimately admitted its missile defense system shot down the plane after initially blaming technical or mechanical error. Iranian President Hassan Rouhani stated it was an “unforgivable mistake.”

Tom Arndt admitted to eTurboNews it was the best step for Iran to admit their mistake, and it’s now time for the Ukrainian airline to step up to the plate in admitting that allowing their flight to take off was a big mistake.

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said, “Shooting down a civilian aircraft is horrific … Iran must take full responsibility … We expect Iran to compensate these families.” Ukraine officials said that Iran should compensate the victims’ families.

At the time of the crash, the US Federal Aviation Administration banned civilian aircraft from flying over the region. After the downing of Malaysian Airlines Flight 17 in 2014, many airlines respect FAA notices when making safety decisions. Several airlines, including Air France, Air India, Singapore Airlines, and KLM, rerouted their flights. Other airlines such as Emirates and Flydubai canceled all flights over and to Iran.

eTurboNews in an earlier article pointed out that Lufthansa, Austrian Airlines, Turkish Airlines, Qatar Airways, and Aeroflot should share responsibility with Ukraine International Airlines and the Iranian government and take responsibility for this horrible incident.

eTN pointed out in the article: Ukraine International Airlines may have followed the example of other international carriers including Lufthansa, Austrian Airlines, Aeroflot, Qatar Airways, and Turkish Airlines that ignored the FAA warning and continued their operation despite the clear and unmistakable warning by the FAA. Austrian Airlines, Qatar Airways, and Aeroflot even operated a day after the deadly crash.

eTurboNews had asked why airlines continued to fly and listed data documenting flights operated by commercial carriers despite the obvious danger.

When asked by eTurboNews if this class-action may be expanded to other airlines, Mr. Arndt said, “We’re still in the initial phase and are exploring all avenues to get justice for the families involved.”

eTurboNews asked who would pay for the lawsuit. Mr. Arndt responded: “There is no out-of-pocket cost for the families. He added that New York-based litigation funding company, Galactic Litigation Partners LLC, has agreed, subject to court approval, to finance the class-action against the Iranian Government and Ukraine International Airlines.”

Are you going after the U.S. government for starting a chain reaction of events? eTN asked. Tom Arndt’s response was, “At this time we have no plans to involve the U.S. Government into this lawsuit.”

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About the author

Juergen T Steinmetz

Juergen Thomas Steinmetz has continuously worked in the travel and tourism industry since he was a teenager in Germany (1977).
He founded eTurboNews in 1999 as the first online newsletter for the global travel tourism industry.