Meanwhile, there has been lots of talk in BC’s tight-knit flying community about the ill-fated flight that killed the two young pilots and two underworld figures. Lahrkamp was wanted for the murder in Thailand of the United Nations gangster Jimi Sandhu. Bailey, of the Independent Soldiers gang, was out on bail after being charged with attempted murder and conspiracy to kill in connection with an October 2020 shooting in Vancouver.

YongJun Rhee, Chief Flight Instructor at the Canadian Aviation College in Pitt Meadows, said he didn’t know either pilot, although he has spoken to a colleague who knew Hong.

He said pilots are well aware of the Transport Canada rules that they “have a commercial license and then the aircraft must be registered for commercial service.”

“For the air taxis, they must have a certain operation certificate,” he said.

Rhee said it is impossible to know if others might be operating similar illicit air taxi services.

“There are likely a lot of people who can… just get cash and they can do whatever they want, right? Under the table. But technically if they want to do the advertising … as a company, they have to have a certificate from Transport Canada,” he said.

I have added that other pilots are talking about the circumstances of the recent crash because it was so unusual.

His college trains about 20 to 30 students every year, many of them international, Rhee said.

“We’re expanding nowadays. We are quite busy,” he said, adding that the college offers the Airline Transport Pilot License program. “A lot of people from overseas, they’re looking for those certain programs to get that training.”

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