Families Of Men Killed In Aaliyah Crash File Lawsuits

They say singer's label was more concerned with money than with providing safe transportation.

The families of two passengers who died in the plane crash that killed Aaliyah and eight others last year have filed lawsuits against her record label, Virgin Records, the Associated Press reports.

Family members of Eric Foreman and Anthony Dodd allege that Virgin was negligent in chartering the small plane that crashed immediately after taking off from an airfield in the Bahamas (see "Aaliyah Killed In Plane Crash"). The suits also claim the aircraft was overloaded and the pilot not authorized to fly the plane (see "Pilot Of Aaliyah's Plane Had Been Caught With Cocaine, Was Not Authorized To Fly").

An attorney for the families said Virgin "took profits over the safety of transporting people" by using a "fly-by-night" charter aircraft company.

A spokesperson for Virgin Records was not available for comment.

Reports from Bahamian aviation officials said the estimated weight of the plane, luggage and fuel was about 5,495 pounds, not including the weight of the nine occupants. Maximum takeoff weight for the twin-engine Cessna 402B is 6,300 pounds, which would leave only 805 pounds for the pilot and passengers (see "Report Shows Aaliyah's Plane Was Overloaded").

The families filed their lawsuits against Virgin Records America, affiliated music and video production units, the plane's owner, and the charter air company hired for the August 25, 2001 flight.

The families seek unspecified monetary damages and, according to their lawyer, "answers to why this tragedy occurred."

Aaliyah and her entourage were in the Bahamas shooting a video for the Grammy-nominated "Rock the Boat."

For complete coverage of the Aaliyah tragedy, check out "The Aaliyah Reports."