Cotswold Geotechnical Holdings have been fined £385,000 after becoming the first company to be convicted under the new Corporate Manslaughter & Corporate Homicide Act following the death of Alex Wright in 2008, who suffocated when a 3.5m trench in which he was working collapsed on top of him.
Reacting to the verdict and sentence at Winchester Crown Court Ian Tasker, Assistant Secretary of the Scottish Trades Union Congress (STUC), said
“This is a small company, with only eight employees, is a similar size than those previously prosecuted for manslaughter under English Law. It does not have the size or status of the type of corporate entity that the new legislation was expected to deal with. We have always believed the legislation to be ineffective, particularly in dealing with large corporations.
“The STUC are concerned that there has still not been a prosecution of corporate homicide in Scotland nearly two years after the legislation was introduced.
“We maintain that existing legislation needs to be reviewed to ensure it is fair and equitable and that everyone in Scotland is held accountable when their failures cause death whether at work or in our communities.
For further information contact Ian Tasker 0141 337 8100