Here are 2, one in the US and the other in Canada.
Man gets 14 years for pointing laser at helicopter
Bart Jansen, USA TODAYPublished 2:19 p.m. ET March 12, 2014 | Updated 2:37 p.m. ET March 12, 2014
Pointing a laser at a police helicopter got a California man a 14-year prison sentence, which federal officials and pilots hope will discourage the threat to airline safety.
Sergio Rodriguez, 26, of Clovis, was sentenced Monday for pointing a laser at a Fresno police helicopter, according to U.S. Attorney Benjamin Wagner. Rodriguez and his girlfriend, Jennifer Coleman, 23, were both convicted by a federal jury after a three–day trial in December.
Laser strikes are a concern for airliners because they can temporarily blind a pilot while landing or taking off. The number of laser strikes against aircraft has climbed sharply in the last decade, reaching 3,960 incidents last year.
"This is not a game. It is dangerous, and it is a felony," Wagner said. "Those who aim lasers at aircraft should know that we will seek to convict them, and we will seek to send them to prison. The safety of aircraft and the people in them demands no less."
Coleman's sentencing is scheduled May 12.
According to evidence presented at trial, Rodriguez and Coleman used a high-powered green laser pointer to repeatedly strike the helicopter cockpit during a clear summer night in 2012. The helicopter known as Air 1 responded to their apartment complex near Fresno Yosemite International Airport to investigate laser strikes on an emergency helicopter for Children's Hospital of Central California.
The Air Line Pilots Association, a union representing 50,000 pilots, issued a statement praising the prosecution and sentence, which it said "will help send the message to others that intentionally aiming a laser at aircraft is not a prank, but a federal crime with very serious consequences."
Leon McLin, a senior research optometrist for the Air Force Research Laboratory who testified at trial, indicated at sentencing that the laser pointer that Rodriguez used was capable of inflicting serious bodily injury and, indirectly, death due to a high potential for crash caused by visual interference.
A person on the ground can aim a laser pointer, which can cost as little as $50, into the cockpit of a plane or helicopter. The cockpit glass diffuses the light, which pilots complain is like a flashbulb going off and temporarily hurting their vision at a critical time of taking off or landing a plane.
Last month, the FBI began offering rewards up to $10,000 for information leading to the conviction of someone aiming a laser at a plane. The ALPA is working with the FAA to promote the campaign with public-service announcements, billboards and press releases focused in 12 cities. They are: Albuquerque; Chicago; Cleveland; Houston; Los Angeles; New York; Philadelphia; Phoenix; Sacramento; San Antonio; San Juan, Puerto Rico; and Washington. World .
Langley man who shone laser at RCMP helicopter sentenced
CBC News Posted: Feb 26, 2013 5:24 PM PT| Last Updated: Feb 26, 2013 5:17 PM PT
A 30-year-old Langley man who shone a green laser pointer at an RCMP helicopter has been given a five-month conditional sentence that includes a curfew at night, one year on probation, and a ban on possessing lasers.
Alexander William Schiller was charged with mischief and violating the Canadian Aeronautics Act by endangering an aircraft, interfering with a crew member and creating an airspace hazard.
'It's like someone turns on a huge green light bulb in the cockpit.'
—RCMP Cpl. Curtis Brassington
He pleaded guilty to all three charges in October, and was handed his sentence in Vancouver Tuesday.
In April 2011, Schiller pointed an illuminated green laser pointer up into the sky at a police helicopter. The beam was so bright it forced the crew to put on night vision equipment.
Some green laser pointers can produce beams 35 times more intense than similar red laser pointers and can cause permanent eye damage in a fraction of a second.
Cpl. Curtis Brassington, an RCMP Flight Officer, said the flash inside an airplane or helicopter from a small laser beam can be immediately blinding.
A cockpit recording shows the moment the laser was aimed at the RCMP helicopter in April 2011 and the blinding effect it had. (RCMP)
"It's like someone turns on a huge green light bulb in the cockpit," he said.
Crown Attorney Jason Krupa said that most offences involving lasers pointed at aircrafts aren't pursued, but in this case it was, because the target was the police.
"The fact it was a police helicopter meant that they had the equipment to locate him easier, but whether it's a civilian aircraft, commercial aircraft, police helicopter, the risk is the same. It's extremely dangerous," Krupa said.
The judge agreed with the Crown. In handing down her sentence, she said the offence was serious and a danger to aviation.
Schiller wrote a letter of apology to the RCMP pilot involved and repeated that apology outside the Vancouver courthouse Tuesday.
"I would say that I apologize. It was a reckless and stupid thing to do. It was a couple of years ago. We've dealt with it now," Schiller said.
Pilots across Canada continue to deal with the problem. In the last 12 months, Transport Canada has logged about 60 reports of laser strikes on aircraft in B.C., and around 350 reports across Canada