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The massive multinational corporation was charged with conspiracy to defraud the United States by making misleading statements to authorities about the safety of your 737 MAX aircraft.

More than half of the payment will go to compensate the airlines that purchased the 737 MAX.

Debris piled up at the scene of the Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302 crash. (AP)

Another A $ 643 million (US $ 500 million) will go to the heirs, relatives and legal beneficiaries of the 346 passengers who died in the accidents of Lion Air Flight 610 and Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302.

“The tragic accidents of Lion Air Flight 610 and Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302 revealed the fraudulent and deceptive conduct of employees of one of the world’s leading commercial aircraft manufacturers,” Acting Assistant Attorney General David P. Burns said at a statement issued by the US Department of Justice..

“Boeing employees chose the path of profit over candor by withholding material information from the FAA about the operation of its 737 Max aircraft and making an effort to cover up their deception.

“This resolution holds Boeing accountable for the criminal misconduct of its employees, addresses the financial impact to Boeing’s airline customers, and hopefully provides some measure of compensation to the families and beneficiaries of accident victims.”

Rescuers use a crane to retrieve part of the landing gears from the crashed Lion Air plane. (AP)

All but one of the victims were Indonesian.

The accident was attributed to a design flaw in the 737.

All 737 MAX aircraft around the world were grounded after the second accident.

Boeing misled the US authorities about an important component of the aircraft called the Maneuvering Characteristics Augmentation System (MCAS).

A United Airlines Boeing 737 Max plane takes off in the rain. (AP)

Boeing technical pilots became aware of the changes to the system in 2016, but withheld it from authorities. The changes were omitted from the aircraft manuals and pilot training materials.

“Misleading statements, half-truths and omissions reported by Boeing employees to the FAA impeded the government’s ability to ensure the safety of the flying public,” US Attorney Erin Nealy Cox said in a statement.

“This case sends a clear message: The Justice Department will hold manufacturers like Boeing accountable for defrauding regulators, especially in industries where the stakes are high.”

Boeing had told airlines that there was a critical warning light that would alert pilots if MCAS was receiving false data.

But he discovered months before the accident that the light would not work unless the airlines bought a separate feature.

The Ethiopian relatives of the accident victims cry and cry at the scene where the Ethiopian Airlines Boeing 737 Max 8 crashed shortly after take-off. (AP)

The deal was announced moments after the close of business on the New York Stock Exchange.

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