The Department of Labour today laid 25 charges against three parties alleging health and safety failures at the Pike River Coal mine following the tragic deaths of 29 miners nearly a year ago.
The charges were laid at the Greymouth District Court this morning and each carries a maximum penalty of $250,000.
The Department is unable to name those charged at this point as they either have existing name suppression orders in their favour, or have the right to apply for name suppression.
Identifying the specific charges could also lead to identification of the three parties charged so the Department is unable to specify the detail of the charges.
The Department recognises there is high public interest in who has been charged and is taking urgent steps to ensure that where possible, names of the parties charged can be published.
Now that charges have been laid, a formal legal process is underway. The Department is unable to provide further information, and will not be giving interviews.
Notes to Editor
- The Department’s investigative process, culminating in the laying of charges, has taken 357 days to complete. It has been the most complex investigation ever undertaken by the Department.
- At its peak, a team of 15 was directly involved in the investigation.
- Over 200 interviews were conducted.
- The Department engaged acknowledged subject experts to assist the investigation.