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March 3, 2024



In November 2023, we wrote about AERO BLEU AIRWAYS and its actual owner, Philippine Congressman Dan (Danilo) Fernandez. Let me remind you - this company has repeatedly distinguished itself by wet leasing cargo aircraft for charter programs. However, each time, the lack of professionalism of management in planning flights and basic ignorance of the laws operating in the cargo transportation market led to the fact that programs were disrupted, aircraft were idle, and AERO BLEU AIRWAYS simply refused to pay both leasing payments and the bills for previously provided handling and refueling services.


The editors of BLACKLIST.AERO are currently aware of at least three similar cases. The total damage caused by the actions of AERO BLEU AIRWAYS to other participants in the aviation market exceeds 5 million USD. Moreover, in all cases, the company’s actions were directly led by Congressman Dan Fernandez. The fact that Philippine law (namely Republican Act No. 6713 of February 20, 1989) expressly prohibits parliamentarians from participating in business seems to be of little concern not only to Danilo Fernandez himself, but also to Philippine parliamentarians.


In December 2023, the editors of BLACKLIST.AERO sent an official appeal with a request to investigate the facts of illegal business activities by Congressman Danilo Fernandez to the Congress, the Senate and the Department of Transportation of the Philippines. These appeals were officially registered. However, after almost three months, despite written reminders, not a single official response has been received from Philippine parliamentarians. Apparently, when it comes to the Philippine congressman, Republic Act No. 11032, or the “Ease of Doing Business and Efficient Government Service Delivery Act of 2018,” does not apply to such people and they do not have to respond to our requests.


But we, and at the same time all participants in the aviation market, received not an official, but more than clear answer! At last week's Singapore Airshow 2024, ST Engineering company announced that AERO BLEU AIRWAYS had signed a Letter of Intent to lease two A321-200P2Fs.


Why the company needs exactly two aircraft is not difficult to guess. AERO BLEU AIRWAYS apparently finally decided to become Airways. Because in previous years they acted as “Horns and Hooves Airways” without having their own AOC. It was this factor that constantly became an obstacle to the implementation of Dan Fernandez’s ambitious plans. Neither he nor the management of his company, represented by CEO Jesse Santos, simply did not accept the fact that, in the presence of the so-called “Fifth Freedom”, companies from third countries could not operate flights from Tokyo to the Philippines.


The article in BLACKLIST.AERO also played a role. After it, as well as the efforts of our Operations team, which was able to convey the importance of professional solidarity to a large number of potential lessors, these “cargo market professionals” were repeatedly given a brush-off.


At the recent Singapore Airshow, ST Engineering announced that AERO BLEU AIRWAYS has signed an LOI for the lease of two passenger-to-freighter converted A321-200. The official lessor in this story will be Juniper Aviation Investments, the 50-50 joint venture between ST Engineering and Temasek.


But the most striking thing is not that ST Engineering did not care about all cases of non-payment by AERO BLEU, obviously charmed by the charisma and high political position of Congressman Fernandez. But the fact that Dan Fernandez himself is not embarrassed at all to appear at such “ceremonies” as the main character! The law is not written to him! A congressman can do business if he wants!


Such a “public response” to our appeals to Philippine parliamentarians cannot but cause indignation due to its demonstrative arrogance and disregard for the laws of their own country. Of course, if something happens, a congressman can always hide behind the role of some kind of “ambassador” performing a purely ceremonial or even charitable mission. Only, representatives of companies that suffered from the actions of AERO BLEU AIRWAYS are ready to give official testimony that Congressman Danilo Fernandez previously introduced himself to them as the direct owner of AERO BLEU AIRWAYS and discussed all commercial issues of upcoming operations!


Notable is the position of the CEO of AERO BLEU AIRWAYS Jesse E. Santos. At first, he tried to show himself and his company as victims: “We were leased a plane that can’t fly anywhere! And we paid so much money!” When the Registry administration suggested to put aside the topic of unpaid leasing bills for a while and set out the company’s position regarding unpaid bills for actually operated flights to Hong Kong (fuel, handling, permits), Jesse simply “disappeared off the radar.”


After the article was published in BLACKLIST.AERO and paralegal actions began against this company (after which, as a consequence, several new potential victims refused to cooperate with them) Jesse E. Santos again appeared with a proposal to resolve the situation with non-payments of AERO BLEU AIRWAYS. However, he immediately disappeared again!


I understand perfectly well that both Dan Fernandez and Jesse Santos want to close their problems (at least in the public sphere) and not give away money. It doesn't happen that way. You, gentlemen, must finally grow out of short pants and learn to take responsibility for your “tricks” as adults.


In this regard, I have several appeals:


To Congressman Danilo Fernandez

I am very glad that at least my previous article forced you to finally reckon with the legal norms of cargo transportation and accept the reality: without your own AOC it will be almost impossible for you to transport cargo from Japan to the Philippines. Yes, this is a fact, the Japanese do not give permission to airlines from third countries to do this!


But “lessons from BLACKLIST.AERO” are expensive. Please pay. Cost - USD 751,536.84. Exactly as much as indicated in the case. Payment – to your claimant.


If you think that we will let you freely do business until you have not returned to other participants in the aviation market their honestly earned money, do not comfort yourself with illusions.


In recent weeks, more and more journalists from the Philippines have been referring to BLACKLIST.AERO for details of your case. I understand perfectly well that the obvious reason for this is the upcoming new elections to the Congress. Apparently, your opponents are preparing in full. To be honest, we have no desire to participate in political games. I know from own bitter experience how dirty politics and politicians themselves are. And how they can twist everything to suit their political goals.


However, if we can't get answers from you personally, the Congress, the Senate, or the Philippine Department of Transportation, then at the end of the day I don’t give a damn who helps us get the answers we need. I know one thing - we will get it sooner or later. We are ready to share all the information that we collect regarding you and the AERO BLEU AIRWAYS company with our readers and with everyone who contacts us.


To the CEO of AERO BLEU AIRWAYS Jesse E. Santos

Yes, Congressman Dan Fernandez is a shameless person, that’s a fact. His dishonesty lies in the fact that he imagined himself to be a great aviator, taking part in all the negotiations. And when he was faced with the consequences of everything that you and he had planned together, he quickly ran into the bushes.


But he is a politician with money and connections. Former actor, soap opera star. The conditional Pinocchio, to whom the Cat and the Fox told where to bury the money!


And you are a person from aviation. It is you who bear the greatest responsibility for all the failed flights of AERO BLEU AIRWAYS. You are not qualified enough to run an aviation company and you know it very well! A true professional would have died of shame long ago for the consequences of such ignorance and stubbornness.


Do a good deed - leave and make room for someone more professional. This is the only good thing you can do for AERO BLEU AIRWAYS.



And one more appeal to a man who is little known in aviation, but quite famous behind the scenes of Philippine politics: 


Dear Sir Tomas,

Finally, give some sound advice to your protégé Dan Fernandez. Because, judging by his actions, he will soon lose not only his own financial capital, but also your common political…

Artem Degtiarov, Chief editor at BLACKLIST.AERO

Photo: ST Engineering at LinkedIn



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