Sun10222017

LAST_UPDATEFri, 27 Oct 2017 9am

Prosecutors Are Considering Manslaughter Charges After Grenfell Tower Disaster

A criminal investigation into the Grenfell Tower tragedy is looking into manslaughter charges, Sir Keir Starmer has said.

The shadow Brexit Secretary, who is also the former Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP), revealed prosecutors were currently part of the investigation.

He said they would be looking at whether anyone could be charged with manslaughter following a litany of failings that led to the disaster - in which at least at least 58 people are now feared to have been killed.

Speaking on the BBC's Andrew Marr Show he said: "I spoke to the DPP yesterday and there are prosecutors already in advising the police. So the criminal investigation really has to come first.

"Normally an inquest will only take place at the end of the criminal investigation, so the idea of an inquiry is important because that can, in some circumstances, happen much more quickly and I think speed is of the essence here."

Asked if they would be looking specifically into manslaughter charges, he said: "Yes."

Adding: "When we were looking at this when I was DPP in relation to other fires, we were looking at manslaughter charges.

"There are wider regulatory offences but I think manslaughter is the most serious and that's the one that needs to be looked at first.

"So a public inquiry allows things to happen more quickly and allows a broader range of questions and inquests come usually at the end of the exercise."

He added that all political parties "need to ask serious questions about why recommendations in the past have not been implemented".

-NZHerald