x Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 29 July 2017

Camp boss told he must pay over deaths

A manager has been ordered by the Federal Supreme Court to pay more than Dh800,000 in blood money over the deaths of four workers who suffocated in their room.

ABU DHABI // A labour camp manager has been ordered by the Federal Supreme Court to pay more than Dh800,000 in blood money over the deaths of four workers who suffocated in their room. The men died after inhaling gas from a generator that had been placed illegally inside a bathroom in the camp in Sharjah. Following the incident in January last year, the manager was charged with negligence and failure to comply with safety rules. Last July, the Sharjah Court of First Instance sentenced him to six months in prison and ordered him to pay the blood money to the families of the workers.

In November, the Sharjah Court of Appeals reduced the sentence to a Dh10,000 fine but upheld the payment of blood money. Both prosecutors and the manager appealed to the Federal Supreme Court, which released its verdict in a document this week. The manager argued that he was not responsible for the workers' deaths because he did not intend to kill them, and said the men were responsible for their own safety. "The victims were the ones who placed the generator close to the camp and they were the ones who locked the room without noticing the gas leak," he said.

Rejecting his argument and confirming the sentence, the Supreme Court ruled that the manager could be charged with a crime because he failed to comply with legal requirements "determined explicitly or implicitly" by law to prevent any harm. "There is evidence of non-compliance with safety rules and also evidence he was responsible for ensuring safety," Justice Falah al Hajeri wrote. @Email:hhassan@thenational.ae