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Party responsible for Kaohsiung blasts faces compensation, possibly jail
Central News Agency
2014-08-03 01:47 PM
Taipei, Aug. 3 (CNA) The party found responsible for the deadly explosions that jolted Kaohsiung Thursday night could face criminal charges, as well as payments of enormous compensation to the victims, according to a lawyer. As of Sunday noon, at least 28 people were dead and more than 290 injured in a series of explosions that began just minutes before midnight Thursday night. Authorities believe the blasts were caused by leaking propylene gas, leading to one of the worst accidents of its kind in Taiwan. Liao Te-chiao, a lawyer from the Taipei-based Win Wan Attorneys-at-Law, said if the explosions were found to be caused by a propylene leak, the party found to be responsible could face criminal charges of negligent homicide in performing occupational duties or activities, which carries a possible jail sentence of up to five years. Also, those individuals operating the pipeline operations, their managers and company executives, might face criminal charges, Liao continued. The Kaohsiung District Prosecutors Office said Saturday that the responsible party could face charges, including offences against public safety. Meanwhile, the families of victims in such accidents might normally receive compensation of NT$5million to 10 million (US$166,970 to 333,940), Liao said. As for people who are seriously injured, such as those in a vegetative state, the compensation could be more than NT$10 million, he added. Additionally, a victim's parents, children, husband or wife could claim compensation from the party responsible for the blasts. CPC Corp., Taiwan, paid compensation of more than NT$400 million for a gas explosion in Kaohsiung's Cianjhen District in 1997 that killed 11 people and injured 17 others. Considering the scale of the blasts, those found responsible for the explosions in Kaohsiung could face higher compensation than paid out in 1997, Liao explained. (By Pan Chih-yi and Kuo Chung-han)
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