Podolsky District Court of Kiev has issued an arrest warrant against five Russian An-124-100 Ruslan transport aircraft operated by Russia’s Volga-Dnepr Airlines for alleged unauthorised maintenance checks.
UAWire citing a statement by Ukrainian law firm Ilyashev & Partners, reported that the world’s largest civil cargo aircraft were “arrested” at the request of the Ukraine’s Antonov Concern.
Antonov alleged that Volga-Dnepr Airlines and its Leipzig/Halle-based MRO subsidiary, AMTES GmbH, performed unauthorised checks on the An-124s and subsequently extended the validity of type certificates of the said aircraft. The Ukrainian manufacturer said that such maintenance checks should not have been approved by the authorities as it was the world's only MRO centre authorised to conduct heavy checks on the type, reports ch-aviation.
Volga-Dnepr and AMTES denied executing unauthorised maintenance on the Antonov An-124s.
According to the lawyers, the Russian Federal Air Transport Agency illegally certified the German company AMTES for the aircraft maintenance. As a result, the “safety of the aircraft was under threat.”
Volga-Dnepr Airlines specializes in providing air charter services by operating a fleet of twelve Antonov An-124s, five Boeing 747-8F and five IL-76TD-90VD (Stage IV) ramp all cargo aircraft certified for global operations. It is a world leader in the global market for the movement of oversize, unique and heavy air cargo. In April last year, the company decided to stop cooperation with NATO. Then it was reported that Ukrainian Antonov Airlines could take over part of the traffic.