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Boeing crash widow sues for $401 million

Britt-Marie Seex, the mother of American victim Jonathan Seex of the Ethiopia plane Crash, sits next to a photograph of her son with the widow Nadege Dubois-Seex, right, during a press conference about a lawsuit against American plane maker Boeing in Paris, Tuesday, May 21, 2019. Boeing faces a growing stack of lawsuits over the Ethiopian Airlines crash in March and another in Indonesia last year, which killed 346 people in total. (AP Photo/Michel Euler)

The French widow of a man killed in the Ethiopian Airlines March crash is suing the aircraft manufacturer for AU$401 million, or one full day of Boeing’s 2018 earnings.

Nadege Dubois-Seex, the widow of Swedish and Kenyan citizen Jonathan Seex told reporters in Paris this week that the tragedy which killed 157 people could have been avoided, CNN reports.

“It had already happened five months before,” she said, referring to the Lion Air crash in October last year involving the same 737 Max 8 model which killed 189 staff and passengers.

“How could they stay deaf to this warning?" she said.

"The life of my husband was taken knowingly, and even willingly. Boeing acted with cynicism. My husband was the collateral damage of a system, of a business strategy."

Boeing recently said there were flaws in the flight simulator software it used to train pilots flying the aircraft after the fatal crashes, but did not say when the problems were discovered.

The lawyer representing Dubois-Seex, Nomaan Husain said Boeing was aware of problems with the plane’s software.

"We asked the jury, after considering all of the evidence, after considering Boeing's reckless and willful action in which it consciously disregarded the safety of its passengers, to award a minimum in the form of a punishment to Boeing of US$276 million (AU$401 million)," he said, explaining that that figure was deliberately chosen to mirror one day’s worth of Boeing’s gross profits.

He asked if one day’s worth of gross receipts would be a severe-enough punishment to deter future mistakes.

“Or is it one week's worth of wages, or one month, or one year? That's going to be for the jury to decide."

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