Scott Hopes is out as CEO of AeroVanti repleced by Founder Patrick Britton-Harr’s brother Todd Britton-Harr.
The AeroVanti saga has taken another turn as Todd Britton-Harr, brother of deposed Founder and CEO Patrick Britton-Harr, has replaced Scott Hopes as CEO.
According to two sources, Hopes was notified earlier this week that he had been terminated from the still-grounded private aviation flight provider.
Hopes had taken the top spot in July after AeroVanti grounded its fleet, missed payroll, and had been hit with a half dozen lawsuits from members and aircraft owners.
Patrick Britton-Harr was subsequently indicted by the SEC for Medicare fraud from other companies he controlled in the medical field.
The complaint alleged that Britton-Harr used funds from those schemes to launch AeroVanti in 2021.
Hopes said he wanted to get AeroVanti restarted and had been working to raise money.
He had told members and the media that the company owed as much as $50 million in unpaid sports team sponsorships and funds it had received from members for future flights and to purchase aircraft that were never bought.
Several of the lawsuits were from lessors of those aircraft.
Another lawsuit from a member accused AeroVanti of being a Ponzi scheme.
Todd Britton-Harr brings with him to the CEO’s office a 2012 conviction for mortgage fraud.
He was sentenced to four years in prison.
He was also convicted of a 2010 drug offense.
According to court documents, he was caught with 46 bundles of marijuana with a net weight of 465.97 kilograms.
The Houston Chronicle reported, “Britton-Harr, who is housed at the Coastal Bend Detention Center near Corpus Christi, said he ran his first load in May 2010 to pay down a business partner’s $600,000 debt to drug traffickers. Each time, he transported a load of 1,000 to 1,500 pounds of marijuana, worth roughly $100,000, to traffickers.
Neither Hopes nor Patrick Britton-Harr could be reached for comment at the time of publication.
After we published the article, Hopes posted the following on the AeroVanti Member Forum:
Good afternoon Forum Members, I was quite surprised to find out on a flight from Portland, Maine to Sarasota, Florida, Saturday night October 14, 2023, that only 2 shareholders out of more than 60, “met” including AeroVanti’s founder Patrick Tormay Britton-Harr, to pass a resolution to replace the Board of AeroVanti, Inc. with Todd Britton-Harr and an individual which I believe is in Las Vegas, a Mr. John Madsen.
Effective Saturday evening, October 14, 2023, Todd Britton-Harr is the Chairman and CEO of AeroVanti, Inc.
While we were on schedule to have 4 aircraft airworthy for the holiday season beginning with Thanksgiving, it is doubtful those particular planes will be available to AeroVanti given this dramatic change. I have received calls from a number of you and shared greater detail of the status of your flying club. Because I have been contacted by a number of attorneys who have either filed lawsuits this week against AeroVanti and the Britton-Harrs or are preparing cases, I will need to limit written correspondence.
Should you desire additional updates, I believe these three individuals are closest to the current status and operations and are back engaged with running the company:
Patrick Tormay Britton-Harr, Todd Fielding Britton-Harr, Troy Maguire (Mac) Britton-Harr, and I have been told their father Steven Lee Harr is back involved with AeroVanti.
Todd Britton-Harr subsequently contacted us via email.
He wrote, “Scott was fired because he did not raise any funds and did not have a plan to get planes in the air because he had exhausted the loan funds and nothing had progressed.”