NAHA, Okinawa — The Air Force pilot of a private plane that made an emergency landing in a Nago sugarcane field in October was fined by a Japanese court Monday for negligence.

The Naha Summary Court ordered Air Force Lt. Col. John F. Rued, 45, an American pilot, to pay a fine of 200,000 yen (about $2,000) for violating the Act Against Prejudicing the Safe Operation of an Aircraft.

A second charge of failing to file a flight plan was dismissed due to a lack of evidence, according to a spokesman for the Naha District Public Prosecutors Office.

Rued paid the fine Monday, the spokesman said.

Rued was piloting a Cessna 172 plane owned by the Kadena Aero Club on Oct. 24 when it ran out of fuel while returning from Amami Island. He was forced to make an emergency landing in a rural area of Nago after the lightweight aircraft developed engine trouble, and he struck several power lines, according to Okinawa police.

According to an Air Force investigation report, Rued was on his way back to Kadena Air Base. He failed to properly gauge how much fuel was needed for the round-trip flight, the report stated. Rued and three passengers were not seriously injured.

Okinawa police forwarded charges against Rued to the prosecutors office last month.

The Aero Club was grounded for more than a month while the 18th Wing devised new safety measures that now require mandatory refueling on all islands more than 90 minutes from Kadena.

"We’re not in a position to comment on the Naha Summary Court’s legal proceedings as it is a local legal matter," said Beth Gosselin of 18th Wing Public Affairs.

"Due to the Privacy Act, we will not release the pilot’s name."

The negligence charge carried a maximum punishment of three years in prison or a fine of up to 200,000 yen.

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