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    DIRECTOR PROSECUTED OVER DEATH OF CHILD

    Company director faces manslaughter charge over collapsing wall fatality

    The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) has decided that Mr George Collier should be charged with gross negligence manslaughter in relation to the death of Meg Burgess on 26 July 2008 in Prestatyn, Wales.

    Meg Burgess, aged three, died when a wall designed by Mr Collier and constructed by his company, Parcol Developments Limited, collapsed on to a public footpath in Ffordd Penrhwyfla.

    North Wales Police stated that they have kept the family fully updated throughout the investigation and they have been informed of this decision. “This remains a difficult time for the family and they request that their privacy is respected.”

    Mr Collier has been summonsed to appear at Prestatyn Magistrates’ Court on 3 October 2011.

    Corporate manslaughter ruled out

     Rosemary Ainslie, reviewing lawyer for the CPS Special Crime and Counter Terrorism Division, said:

    “I have carefully reviewed all of the evidence gathered by North Wales Police and HSE during their thorough investigation into the tragic death of Meg Burgess in July 2008.

    After considering reports from experts on construction standards and advice from counsel, I have decided that George Collier should be charged with gross negligence manslaughter for his role in designing and constructing the wall that collapsed. 

    I have also decided that Parcol Developments Limited, of which Mr Collier was a director, should be charged with an offence under Section 3 of the Health and Safety Act at Work 1974. Section 3.

    I considered whether Parcol Developments should also be charged with corporate manslaughter. There is sufficient evidence to prosecute the company for this offence, but it would not be in the public interest to do so. The company had only two directors and Mr Collier was the only one directly involved in this incident. The charge against him is sufficiently serious to address the alleged offending.”

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