Kangs Solicitors have successfully defended a client charged with two counts of manslaughter by gross negligence and guided him in respect of allegations of a Health and Safety at Work Act offence, following a house fire in Huddersfield which, sadly, resulted in the deaths of two children.
Helen Holder, who had conduct of our client’s defence, reports the successful outcome.
The Allegations | Kangs Fire Safety Solicitors
The Prosecution alleged that our client, the letting agent for the property, was responsible for the death of two children in a house fire through his gross negligence in failing to fit smoke alarms.
An electrical fault in a TV caused a fire in a bedroom in February 2016.
It is believed that this is the first prosecution under Regulations governing smoke alarms which came into force on the 1st October 2015 requiring Landlords to ensure that working smoke alarms are fitted on each level of rented properties.
How We Assisted Our Client | Kangs Trial Preparation Team
By way of preparation for the trial we:
- regularly attended our client to take detailed instructions
- examined the Prosecution evidence in detail
- instructed specialist fire reconstruction experts and enquiry agents to conduct door to door enquiries
- attended upon potential defence witnesses
- perused and considered large amounts of defence business records
- identified suitable junior counsel and instructed him in detail
- subsequently, given the seriousness of the allegations, identified appropriate Queen’s Counsel and successfully obtained authority to instruct
- attended conferences with our client and counsel
- attended Procedural Court Hearings.
The Trial | Kangs Serious Crime Trial Solicitors
- the Trial commenced on the 2nd July 2018 at Leeds Crown Court
- the Prosecution presented evidence during a two week period
- throughout the presentation of this evidence, it was constantly successfully cross examined by our client’s counsel with the effect that:
- the Prosecution witness evidence was undermined to such an extent that the Prosecution decided:
- to offer no evidence in relation to the two manslaughter counts and
- accept a plea to the Health and Safety offence, even though the Crown had initially rejected our client’s offer of such a plea at the outset of the trial.
The Succesful Outcome | Kangs Serious Crime Team
With the two manslaughter charges having been dropped and our client pleading to the lesser offence, he received a very substantially lower custodial sentence than he would have received in the event that the trial had continued and he had been convicted of the manslaughter charges.
How Can We Help You? | Kangs Serious Crime and Regulatory Solicitors
Kangs Solicitors defend companies and individuals charged with the most serious of crimes throughout the country on a daily basis.
In order to defend allegations you require a legal team with specialist knowledge and the skills to be able to represent you to achieve the very best possible outcome.
We have extensive experience of dealing with cases investigated and prosecuted by all the major prosecuting authorities such as the SFO, FCA, HMRC, CPS, Trading Standards, Environment Agency, Food Standards Agency etc.
Who Can I Contact For Help? | Kangs National Criminal Defence Solicitors
If you are an individual or a company, we are here to assist you manage your contact with the prosecuting authority and advise you throughout any investigation and subsequent criminal proceedings.
Our team of solicitors has a proven track record assisting individuals and businesses facing the prospect of these criminal proceedings.
Our expert team of Solicitors can be contacted through the following: