MAS settles 4 MH370 suits out of court


KUALA LUMPUR: Four suits filed by family members of passengers in the missing flight MH370 three years ago were settled without having to go through a trial.

Lawyer Americk Sidhu, who represented the next of kin, said the out-of-court settlements were today conveyed to High Court judge Azizul Azmi Adanan.

“The judge then recorded the distribution of the settlement sum as children to the deceased were named as parties,” he told FMT after a case management before the judge in chambers.

Americk said as a result, he had withdrawn the suits against Malaysian Airline System Berhad (MAS), the only defendant named in the suits.

“Damages were paid in line with the Montreal Convention but I am not allowed to diclose the settlement sum,” he said.

Lawyer Saranjit Singh appeared for MAS.

A total of 18 family members representing the victims, Tee Lin Keong, Chan Huan Peen, Chew Kar Mooi and Chen Wei Hoing, last year filed the negligence suit against MAS.

Lawyer Shailender Bhar, who is familiar with the (Montreal) convention and Malaysian aviation laws, said under international law, an airline was obliged to pay the next of kin of passengers a minimum RM650,000.

Flight MH370 disappeared while en route to Beijing, China, from Kuala Lumpur International Airport in the early hours of March 8, 2014.

The DCA director-general had on Jan 29, 2015 declared MH370 to be an accident and that all 239 passengers and crew on board the flight were presumed to have lost their lives.

Family members of another 36 passengers have also sued MAS, Malaysia Airlines Berhad (MAB) and the Malaysian government for alleged negligence and breach of duties.

The families have said MAS gave no proper account of events that had happened during the flight which the next of kin were later informed, through text messages, had gone down in the Southern Indian Ocean.

These suits are pending in either the Court of Appeal or the Federal Court.

It is unclear how many suits involving MH370 have been settled out of court.