China arrests 11 for deadly landslide, death toll now 12

  • Reuters, Beijing
  • Updated: Jan 01, 2016 10:42 IST
Rescuers walk among the debris of collapsed buildings as excavators and trucks work at the site of a landslide which hit an industrial park on Sunday, in Shenzhen, Guangdong province. (REUTERS)

Chinese authorities have formally arrested 11 people for their role in a deadly landslide last month in the southern boomtown of Shenzhen and charged them with negligently causing a serious accident, state news agency Xinhua said.

The government has blamed breaches of construction safety rules for the disaster on December 20, when a dump overflowed and engulfed 33 buildings. It has started an investigation.

At least 12 people have been confirmed dead while 62 are missing, Xinhua said late on Thursday.

The 11 people arrested include a legal representative and a deputy general manager of Shenzhen Yixianglong Investment Development, which ran the dump, and officials who were supposed to be supervising it, the report added, citing the Shenzhen prosecutor.

They have been charged with the crime of negligently causing a serious accident, and the prosecutor has urged the police to track down other suspects as soon as possible, Xinhua said.

It did not elaborate.

Calls to Shenzhen Yixianglong seeking comment went unanswered.

The disaster is the latest deadly accident to raise questions about China’s industrial safety standards and lack of oversight over years of rapid economic growth.

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