Saudi court orders new trial for 2015 crane crash

A Saudi appeals court has ordered about a dozen people accused of negligence in the deadly 2015 crane collapse in Makkah to stand trial for a second time

The ruling came after an appeal by prosecutors.
The ruling came after an appeal by prosecutors.

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A Saudi appeals court has ordered about a dozen people accused of negligence in the deadly 2015 crane collapse in Makkah to stand trial for a second time, according to reports on Monday.

The appeals judges overturned the Makkah criminal court's decision that it had no jurisdiction over allegations of "safety breaches" by a vote of five to two, Arabian Business reported, citing Saudi newspapers Okaz and Saudi Gazette.

The ruling came after an appeal by prosecutors, though no details of when hearings might resume were given.

The accused included at least one Saudi "billionaire" and nationals of Pakistan, the Philippines, Canada and several Arab countries, the newspapers reported.

The Saudi Summary Court began the trial of a Saudi billionaire and 13 other defendants charged with causing the death of 110 people, injuries of 210 and permanent disability of eight others when a giant crane crashed in the Grand Mosque in September 2015.

The defendants consisted of six Saudis, two Pakistanis and one each from Jordan, Philippines, Canada, Palestine, Egypt and the UAE.

Sources in 2015 added that the charges would focus on negligence, causing loss of lives and damage to properties.

The crane was one of several of Saudi Binladin Groups', erected as part of a multi-billion-dollar expansion plan to accommodate increasing number of visitors at the Grand Mosque.

King Salman suspended the firm from new public contracts for several months after the tragedy.

A report in January revealed human error was allegedly to blame for the accident, and was operated by people who were not licensed to do so, an engineer testified in a Saudi Arabian court.

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