Three employees of MMA cited directly to trial

Three employees of MMA cited directly to trial

The Director of Criminal and Penal Prosecutions decided Wednesday to override the stage of preliminary investigation and go directly to the trial of three former employees of the MMA, who face charges in connection with the Lac-Mégantic train tragedy.

Mr. Thomas Walsh representing the train engineer, Tom Harding, has protested against this practice of prosecution, although it is right to proceed in this way: “It’s legal but not fair play in the circumstances. There was no justification if it is only to prevent the defence to highlight the responsibility that could have senior executives of the company and the Transport Canada managers, the agency that regulates the transportation rail, and has failed in its duty to protect citizens by reducing the steps to follow a company already recognized for its weak culture of safety.

At a preliminary inquiry, it has more freedom to introduce evidence in defence, while during a trial, evidence management is much tighter and stricter,” according to the lawyer.

Charged with criminal negligence causing the death of 47 people following the train derailment in downtown Lac-Mégantic in July 2013, the train engineer Tom Harding, Richard Labrie railway controller and director of operations of the old company Montreal Maine and Atlantic Railways, will return to court Thursday.

The prosecution asked that the matter be brought to the next part of the Superior Court to set a trial date.

It would be surprising that the trial could be held before spring 2016.

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