Pompano Helicopters has filed a $362 million lawsuit against Westwood One alleging that Westwood and its subsidiary, Metro Networks Communications, worked together to drive Pompano out of business and take over its contracts to provide stations with helicopters for news and traffic reporting.
In the suit, filed in the 17th Judicial Circuit Court in Broward County, Fla., Pompano claims Westwood and Metro Networks spread rumors that Pompano was an “unsafe operator” of aircraft and eventually “someone would get killed” because of faulty maintenance.
Pompano claims it lost contracts with Metro and television stations because of the rumors, which it believes were part of a campaign to subvert its business.
According to Pompano, Westwood’s and Metro’s actions were also intended to prevent a merger that Pompano hoped to conclude; it says the deal would have made the company was one of the largest helicopter news and traffic providers in the country and a formidable competitor to Metro and Westwood.
Westwood One had no comment on the suit.