MoD hides behind crown immunity as charges are brought over training deaths

Two men have been charged with negligence following the deaths of three soldiers during an SAS selection march in the Brecon Beacons.

L/Cpl Edward Maher, L/Cpl Craig Roberts and Cpl James Dunsby were taking part in a 16-mile recruitment exercise on the hottest day of 2013.

A coroner ruled they died from neglect.

The Service Prosecution Authority confirmed charges have been brought against two soldiers involved at the time.

The case will be heard in a military court and the maximum sentence is two years.
Hilary Meredith Solicitors represented Cpl James Dunsby’s father at the Inquest into the deaths and provided evidence at the subsequent parliamentary inquiry into military training exercises.

Hilary Meredith, Chair at Hilary Meredith Solicitors and Visiting Professor of Law and Veterans’ Affairs at the University of Chester said:

“In any other corporate environment the employer, in this case the Ministry of Defence (MoD), would take corporate responsibility and face a manslaughter charge.

“However the MoD has refused to accept corporate responsibility for deaths in training, exercises and selection events – ignoring the will of a Parliamentary Inquiry and flying in the face of public opinion in the process.

“It is simply wrong for the MoD to hide behind the officers in charge to escape prosecution.”

Said Clare Stevens, Director at Hilary Meredith Solicitors:

“It should be the MoD in the dock, acknowledging its corporate failings and responsibility rather than looking for scapegoats.”