United’s CEO Investigated for Stealing Sand From Public Beach For His Own Home

In the days following the David Dao passenger beating incident onboard a United Express plane, the airline’s CEO was chided for bicycle riding in front of his $6 million Florida mansion. Now that mansion has him in trouble in a different way.

Credit: Daily Mail

The State of Florida is investigating the United CEO for illegally stealing sand from a public beach to create dunes in the yard of his Florida home.

Apparently he purchased basic economy landscaping and that doesn’t come with any free dunes.

According to Florida’s Department of Environmental Quality Munoz and three other neighbors “may have skirted laws designed to protect the state’s natural resources.”

A letter sent by the state addressed to Mr. Munoz’s wife reads in part, “The Department’s inspection and other photographic evidence suggests that mechanical equipment was used to scrape or push sand from the existing beach to create a small frontal dune at the base of the original eroded dune seaward of the CCCL.”

They have 15 days to arrange a meeting to discuss the matter. With United and United Express operating three peak daily departures from Chicago to Jacksonville, Florida that shouldn’t be difficult to arrange.

Hurricanes Matthew and Irma wiped out the dunes in front of home. However they “have been recently shored up compared to the untouched dunes near neighbors’ homes.”

Tracks left behind in the sand near the restored dunes indicate bulldozers and other machinery were used to scrape sand from the existing beachfront — a possible violation of state regulations.

Munoz was turned in, it seems, by one of his neighbors who shot video of “two earth movers scooping sand from the public beach last week and hauling it toward four private homes.”

Local news in the area suggests that ‘beach scraping’ may have saved each homeowner including Munoz up to $28,000.

(HT: @clayd333)

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community InsideFlyer.com, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. Ratted out by his neighbors, too!


    Guess they had their fill of bad experiences and the other usual abuses on United (and our other crappy airlines), too! Hehehe

  2. Think there is more to the story here. This is the United CEO’s place and he might have ordered the covert burial of a beaten passenger, suffocated dog or even the remains of a broken guitar under that suspicious mound of sand. We need to call in the forensics team.

  3. He’s been shoveling sh*t his entire tenure with United not unlike the rest of his fellow crooks

  4. It would be absolutely hilarious to me if a few people started trolling him for a few days, parking they’re car within inches of his door in the parking lot, standing extra close to him wherever he goes in public, etc. obviously keep it legal but push it. Even better if one of the people is overweight and constantly sweating that also happens to have the flu.

  5. Please consider not posting tabloid-like articles. The comments section used to actually have pretty good value add awhile back.

  6. Be careful what you wish for here…..while many of us who are stuck using United are enjoying this; the flip side is that United’s board might finally have enough with his eneptness and fire him giving us that idiot Scott Kirby (which will be my final straw in taking my status somewhere else….PLEASE Alaska open up more routes in IAH!!)

  7. My understanding is that sand is a mineral resource and permission to remove it must be granted by the federal government.

    This makes two United CEOs in a row to commit federal offenses. While I never thought I could defend Smisek, at least he got something for the company when he bribed the official from the Port Authority of NY and NJ.

  8. Ponte Vedra, why have a house there? It gets cold there in winter. Munoz is just another loser CEO.

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