New trial ordered in deadly stage collapse at Radiohead concert in Toronto

New trial ordered in deadly stage collapse at Radiohead concert in Toronto
TORONTO – A new trial has been ordered for those charged in a deadly stage collapse at an outdoor Radiohead concert in Toronto, sending the case back to square one five years after the grim incident.

Prosecutors say a mistrial was declared after the presiding judge, Justice Shaun Nakatsuru, was appointed to the Ontario Superior Court late last year and ruled he no longer had jurisdiction over the case.

The entertainment company Live Nation, a Toronto-area contractor Optex Staging and an engineer, Domenic Cugliari, were charged in 2013 with a total of 13 charges under the Occupational Health and Safety Act.

The latest delay could put the case in jeopardy under new time limits established by the Supreme Court of Canada last summer, which state that cases heard in provincial court should go to trial within 18 months and those heard in Superior Court should do so within 30 months.

One of the defence lawyers in the case, Scott Thompson, says they will be bringing an application to have the charges thrown out over unreasonable court delays.

A similar application was rejected by Nakatsuru last fall.

A British drum technician who was touring with the band was killed and three other workers were hurt after part of a massive outdoor structure came crashing down during setup for the June 2012 concert at Downsview Park.

The falling debris crushed Scott Johnson, a drum technician in his 30s, whom the band called “a highly skilled and valued member” of its road crew.

Live Nation Canada, Live Nation Ontario and Optex Staging each face four counts alleging they failed to ensure the stage structure was being built in a safe manner.

Cugliari, the engineer, faces one count of endangering a worker as a result of allegedly negligent or incompetent advice or certification.
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