Saudi court throws out Mecca crane collapse case

By Ian Vallely30 January 2017

A Saudi court has dismissed charges against 13 people over a crane collapse in 2015 that killed more than 100 people in Mecca.

The Mecca Criminal Court said it had no jurisdiction to rule on the case, which opened last August.

Two of the three presiding judges decided to drop the case; the third maintained that the court has jurisdiction, according to a report in the Arab News.

The defendants included Saudi and Pakistani nationals as well as a Jordanian, Canadian, Palestinian, Egyptian, Filipinos and United Arab Emirates citizen. They were accused of negligence, damaging public property and ignoring safety guidelines.

The prosecution is understood to have objected to the ruling and asked to appeal.

On 11 September 2015, the crawler crane collapsed after heavy winds toppled it leading to a fatal accident. The Bin Ladin Group was carrying out expansion works at the Grand mosque in Mecca, Saudi Arabia when the deadly disaster occurred as the city was preparing for the Hajj pilgrimage. As a result, at least 110 people were killed and 394 injured.

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