Six people charged with manslaughter over 1989 Hillsborough stadium disaster
The victims died in an overcrowded, fenced-in enclosure at the Hillsborough stadium in Sheffield, northern England, during an FA Cup semi-final between Liverpool and Nottingham Forest.football Updated: Jun 28, 2017 16:45 IST
United Kingdom’s state prosecution service on Wednesday announced criminal charges against six people over the 1989 Hillsborough soccer stadium crush in which 96 fans died, the country’s worst sporting disaster.
The victims, all Liverpool supporters, died in an overcrowded, fenced-in enclosure at the Hillsborough stadium in Sheffield, northern England, during an FA Cup semi-final between Liverpool and Nottingham Forest.
Police at first blamed the tragedy on drunken fans, an explanation that was always rejected by the families of the victims and the wider Liverpool community. Relatives campaigned for justice for the 96 for decades.
“I have decided that there is sufficient evidence to charge six individuals with criminal offences,” said Sue Hemming, head of the special crime and counter-terrorism division at the Crown Prosecution Service, in a statement.
David Duckenfield, a former senior police officer who was in charge of police operations at Hillsborough on the day of the disaster, was charged with the manslaughter by gross negligence of 95 men, women and children, Hemming said.
He was not charged over the death of the 96th casualty, who died four years after the disaster, because of legal time limits that were in force at the time.
The other five people charged included other police officers, a lawyer who had acted for police, and a safety officer at the Hillsborough stadium. Charges included perverting the course of justice, contravening safety regulations and misconduct in public office.