Victims seek charges over Legionnaires’ outbreak
A petrie dish containing the Legionnaire bacteria.
09:45 Thursday 06 February 2014 14:49 Wednesday 05 February 2014
VICTIMS of the legionnaires’ disease outbreak which claimed four lives hope criminal charges will be brought following a key development in the long-running investigation.
The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) has confirmed it is in the process of sending files to the Procurator Fiscal Service, which will now decide whether there is enough evidence to prosecute.
The significant step follows a near two-year probe into the deaths of three men and one woman, aged between 47 and 65. The investigation, which remains ongoing, has also involved the police and NHS Lothian.
Gordon Erasmuson, who was hospitalised after contracting legionnaires’ disease during the outbreak, which occurred between May and July 2012, believes he is yet to fully recover.
While he branded the amount of time the probe had taken as “ridiculous”, Mr Erasmuson, 61, said he hoped the submission of the files would prove to be a breakthrough in victims’ fight for justice.
He added: “I hope this is a significant step on the way to bringing charges.
“That would be the best outcome for the victims – especially those who lost someone because of this. This outbreak was not an act of God.
“I hope some person or entity will be brought to account, although I’m not convinced they want to charge anyone.