The Insolvency Service has only recently started investigating any legal breaches, according to Unite 

carillion hq sunny

Carillion’s former headquarters in Wolverhampton

The country’s biggest trade union, Unite, has called for an immediate criminal investigation into the key individuals involved in the collapse of Carillion.

Speaking at the Trades Union Congress in Manchester earlier today, Unite assistant general secretary Gail Cartmail made the demand and asked other unions to back Unite in its call for an investigation.

Cartmail said: “Eight months after Carillion’s collapse the Insolvency Service is only just beginning to investigate if laws were broken. This is simply too little too late.  

“There must be an immediate criminal investigation into Carillion. And we the trade union movement must lead that call. If no laws were broken, then we need, better, stronger laws.” 

When Carillion  went bust in January it is understood to have had around £7bn of liabilities, including a £2.6bn deficit in its pension funds, and just £29m left in the bank. 

The company had 19,000 employees over 3,000 of whom were made redundant, while there were a further 35,000 people employed in Carillion’s supply chain and via sub-contractors.

Cartmail said: “The government and other organisations are treating Carillion’s collapse as business as normal. There is nothing normal about the biggest corporate collapse in the UK’s history. 

“While thousands of workers have been thrown on the scrapheap, those responsible for driving the company into the ditch, have dusted themselves off and started again as if nothing had happened. 

“If nothing criminal occurred then we should be told how on earth it can be legal to have embarked on the policies pursued by Carillion’s management team which drove it to the wall with little prior warning.” 

Directors at the failed contractor who have come under fire include ex-chief executive Richard Howson, former finance director Richard Adam and chairman Philip Green.