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Court grounds airline for a second time

MEXICO has re-grounded Aviacsa airlines after winning a court order in an ongoing legal fight with the airline over safety concerns.

The Transportation and Communications Department initially grounded the Mexican airline last week after officials reported irregularities in the maintenance of 25 planes. But Aviacsa resumed flights four days later after a judge overturned the order.

Then, on Thursday, a federal appeals court reinstated the government order and the airline was immediately ordered grounded until it fixes the safety problems, the department said in a statement.

Aviacsa officials told Mexican newspapers it had already won a third court order that would allow it to resume flights.

But German Sanchez-Henkel, the chief legal adviser for the Transportation Department, said his agency had not received official notification of that order, and the airline would have to remain grounded until it had been told officially of the third court findings.

If the government does receive official notification, it would then have to allow the flights to resume while it again appeals the decision, Sanchez-Henkel said yesterday.

The airline, which has a fleet of 26 planes serving 17 Mexican cities and Las Vegas, argues that its airplanes are safe.

It says problems raised by the government are all cosmetic - opaque logos, dull lights and scratches on the wings - and that they had already been corrected on five of the planes.


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