30+ years of crime and failure

1980 – 17 year old Riggs arrested for stealing $150 from a Ramada Inn and then found with fraudulently obtained credit cards and drivers licenses. 2 years probation
1980 – shoplifted a tv – 60 day jail sentence suspended – additional 1 year probation

Sometime between 1980 and 1983 – pleaded guilty to insurance fraud – additional 5 years probation

Between 1985 & 1987 – opened Mokan Productions and then set up a company in Nashville called National Studio Supply that sold fictitious video equipment to Mokan Productions.
1987 – Mokan Productions deal fell apart and resulted in a 29 count indictment
1987- Riggs takes $1 million dollars (part cash part wire transfers) and goes to the Cayman Islands after allegedly destroying 8 trash bags worth of paperwork from Mokan.

1988 – Settles in South Africa under the name “Dave Rogers”
1988 – Gets arrested in Hong Kong and charged for using a false Australian passport under the name “Michael Joseph East”
Spends a year in jail in Hong Kong.
A year to the day of being jailed he is extradited back to the United States.

January 1990 – arraigned on 28 counts of bank fraud and one count of passport fraud. Sentenced to 10 years in Federal Prison. Spends time at Leavenworth and then transferred to Seagoville Prison in TX and got credit for his prison time in Hong Kong.

1993 – released from prison he heads to Atlanta. Goes to work for a video post-production company named Video Post. Fired when the owner finds out about his criminal history.

1994 – settled lawsuits and applied for parole transfer, moved to Tampa

1997 – articles appear in the Tampa Bay Business Journal detailing the suppliers, vendors and partners that he has managed to con during his 3 years in Tampa while running Digital Majik Post Productions, Inc.

2006 – V1 Cut Productions and Panopoly Pictures begins work on Succubus: Hell Bent. This is the only movie he was involved in that ever got completed.
2006 – Two pilots killed while following flight direction by Riggs while filming scenes for Succubus: Hell-Bent

2007 – Attempts to work on movies such as “Fast Glass” (which ends up not getting completed and spends years tied up in lawsuits when Riggs gets sued for fraud by the investors)
2007 – Ends up with Terry Fregley’s L-39 (one of the pilots who died in the 2006 plane crash).

2008 – “Kerosene Cowboys” (also never completed) production partnership is put together with a group of Russian investors. This movie also was never completed and resulted in lawsuits against Riggs alleging fraud.
2008 – Buzzes the Santa Monica Pier and Beach in the L-39. Charged by the city of Santa Monica with a section of the state public utilities code designed to protect life and property from careless and reckless pilots.

2009 – NTSB trial for the Santa Monica Pier incident – Riggs pilot’s certificate revoked.

2010 – Riggs tried and found guilty in the criminal trial for the Santa Monica Beach episode. Sentenced to 60 days in jail, 60 days community service (designated to be done cleaning the beach in Santa Monica) and fines and court costs. He immediately appealed.

2006 or thereabouts through NOW – videos on YouTube show he was doing flights for hire in the L-39 (both Wild Child and the one he got from Fregley) for Incredible-Adventures even though he only had a private pilot’s certificate, NOT a commercial ticket nor is he a CFI. He did get a commercial ticket in 2010 but is still not a CFI.

2010 – Files for Chapter 7 bankruptcy personally and on behalf of Afterburner Films, Inc., Kerosene Cowboys, Inc. and Mach I Aviation, Inc. Those filings stayed all the pending trials against Riggs that were scheduled for that summer pending the outcome of the bankruptcies.

2010 – Goes to China to fly in two Air Shows with 2 other pilots. Ends up cheating the promoter of the shows (according to the promoter), holds a one of a kind hot air balloon hostage for no other reason than “because he could”, allegedly attempts to steal the plane belonging to one of the pilots who went to China, and ends up with yet another lawsuit filed against him for contractual fraud.

2011 – Attempts to start the Ultimate Air Race Championship in partnership with Frederico Lapenda. That falls flat even though months are spent falsely advertising it.
2011 – In April he advertises a ride in the “Wild Child” for a auction as a fundraiser in a school in Santa Monica. This is an auction for a flight in a plane that was destroyed several years before, killing 2 pilots who were following Dave Riggs’ directions while filming for a movie. (That’s called fraud for those keeping score).
2011 – In August the appeal hearing for the Santa Monica incident was held. The appellate courts tentative ruling upheld the original conviction and jail sentence. The final written ruling is pending as of September 2, 2011.
2011 – In October the appellate court affirms the original conviction. Even during this time videos and blogs appear detailing Riggs continuing to fly people for hire in the L-39 against all known FAA regulations.
2011 – November 16th, Riggs is sent to LA County Jail on a probation violation for not completing the requirements of his sentence for the Santa Monica incident his fines were also raised from around $940 to almost $6k

2012 – May 18 a pilot and passenger both die when the L-39 they are in crashes in Boulder City Nevada. NTSB report states it was a paid flight put together by Mach One Aviation and Incredible Adventures. Dave Riggs is in the 2nd plane that day.
2012 – November – his pilot license goes away again under an EMERGENCY REVOCATION by the FAA for his part in selling the illegal flights in the L39.

2013 – January – gets injured while doing his “Community Labor” at the beach. This leads to a workman’s comp fraud investigation later in the year
2013 – August – almost arrested in Canada where he presents a fake passport to the RMCP when questioned while he’s there trying to get a commercial pilot license
2013 – September – goes to China to fly in an airshow. On September 17, at approximately 1:40pm, in Shenyang China his plane goes down while he’s flying. His 18 year old passenger, a Chinese translator dies. He is missing for 3 days before his body is finally located at the bottom of the lake on September 20, 2013.

12 Responses to 30+ years of crime and failure

  1. I used to be this guys corporate pilot, back in the Mokan days. I was shocked to find out he was not in prison somewhere. I am also not so shocked at the poor work the FAA has demonstarted with this man. That organization is much in keeping with the way most everything associated with the US Government is run……NOT…..Hope they put him away for good or at the very least keep him out of the air and banks. That said looking at the White House and its performance of late, not much will change until its to late.

  2. Sandy tee says:

    Well David it looks like you got your wish and more, it’s a pity that with all the brains that Dave had he couldn’t find a way to use them more constructively.
    Not the very least his last victim is just that, I feel sorry for the girls family.
    I flew with him, and my daughters both did numerous times, and all I can say is I’m glad we are here to talk about it.

  3. High Flier says:

    Sounds like a fun guy!!

  4. SFK says:

    I am sorry that David had such an “interesting” life that ended in this tragic way. I knew David as a very gentle and polite kid from 1970s when we were friends with his parents since the time they lived in Pakistan and later in Kansas City. We pray that his soul rests in peace.

    • Avidwiz@aol.com says:

      Would that be around the time Riggs pissed in a kids tuba and was expelled from school or when Riggs was arrested for stealing credit cards and money from that hotel, or perhaps it was a bit later when Riggs sole that TV while on probation for the hotel heist? What a delightful scamp he must have been.

  5. GlueBall says:

    In his second life he may come back as a pelican and buzz Santa Monica beach at slow speed.

  6. Richard Castillo says:

    Never heard of him.

  7. Amblt says:

    How do you have Rigg’s email a week after the crash?

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