A dispute between two aviation services companies at Van Nuys Airport has landed in court with one firm alleging the other is misrepresenting itself as a fixed-base operation allowed to sell jet fuel.

The lawsuit by Maguire Aviation seeks to keep Castle & Cooke Aviation Services Inc. from selling fuel to aircraft not based at Van Nuys and pay unspecified damages to Maguire for lost business.

The lawsuit filed Aug. 25 in Los Angeles Superior Court alleges that Castle & Cook Aviation violates the standards and policies of Los Angeles World Airports, the owner and operator of the Valley airfield, and its lease agreement with the City of Los Angeles by selling fuel to transient aircraft and marketing itself as a fixed-base operator.

Castle & Cooke Aviation is allowed to fuel its own airplanes and aircraft leasing hangar space.

Maguire is one of four FBOs at Van Nuys. There are certain minimum requirements, including the amount of space a facility is located on, for a company to operate as an FBO.

"By undertaking commercial activities and representing that it is permitted to do so, Castle & Cook has and continues to deceive the public and general aeronautical community that it is an authorized FBO at Van Nuys Airport permitted to provide FBO related products, services and facilities," the lawsuit said.

Castle & Cooke Aviation is owned by David Murdock, the chairman and CEO of Dole Food Co., and operates a small network of FBOs in Hawaii and Washington State.

Mark R. Madler