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company to go out of business following corporate manslaughter verdict

13 May 2011
In February this year, Cotswold Geotechnical Holdings Limited was the first company to be found guilty of corporate manslaughter.

The prosecution arose following a pit collapse in which a 27 year old geologist died.

Cotswold Geotechnical Holdings was fined £385,000 and yesterday lost its appeal against conviction and sentence.

Amongst the comments made by Lord Chief Justice Lord Judge was that it was "unavoidable and inevitable" that the company may go into liquidation in paying the fine.

The clear message to the lower courts is that financial penalties that would force a company out of business following conviction of corporate manslaughter may be appropriate and perhaps necessary.

Naturally, companies will want to ensure that they have robust and effective health and safety systems in place in order to avoid such grave consequences.

We can assist in advising companies in connection with written systems and plans and all other matters related to health and safety law.

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