A Bangladesh court has found the owner of a garment factory that collapsed in 2013 with heavy loss of life guilty of corruption, Agencies report.
Sohel Rana received the maximum three-year sentence for failing to declare his personal wealth to Bangladesh’s anti-graft commission. He faces further charges, including murder, over the Rana Plaza disaster.
More than 1,100 people died in the collapse near Dhaka. Another 2,500 were rescued, some with traumatic injuries. It was the worst industrial accident in Bangladesh’s history, and led to widespread criticism of global retail practices.
Bangladeshi factories provide cheap clothing for major Western retailers, which benefit from the country’s low-cost labour. Rana and 37 others, including government officials, could receive the death penalty if they are found guilty of murder over the complex’s collapse.
He and 17 others have also been charged with breaching building codes while adding three further floors to the original six-storey building.
Survivors of the collapse said they had been ordered to enter the factory to work despite complaining about the appearance of cracks in the walls. Rana was arrested several days after the accident as he tried to flee to India.