Zolitūde tragedy victims to make claim against Latvian state

Take note – story published 1 year ago

The Association of the victims of the Zolitūde tragedy “Zolitūde 21.11.” intends to appeal to the court with a civil action against the State in relation to the fact that an effective construction monitoring and control system had not been established in Latvia at the time of the tragedy, the head of the association Regīna Ločmele told Latvian Television on February 2. 

Ločmele said: “As soon as the proceedings are finished, we will certainly be preparing a civil action against the State, as the forensic expert points out that the State did not have an effective system of monitoring and control of construction at the moment of the Zolitūde disaster, which could have prevented the deaths of 54 people.”

Ločmele also confirmed that financial compensation would also be required from the State. “There is a certain limit there under the law – it will not be a claim for millions. The money requirement is not the main thing, it is to get a fair trial,” noted Ločmele.

The court started hearing the Zolitūde case in December 2015, two years after the tragedy happened. It took the judges nine months to prepare a full court ruling on the Zolitūde tragedy. The court decision says that the building construction engineer Ivars Sergets violated construction norms, as a result of which the supermarket "Maxima" collapsed. He was convicted of homicide by negligence by the court and was sentenced to six months in prison. All other accused were acquitted. The building that collapsed had previously won architectural awards and was notable for a garden constructed on the roof.

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