Cotswold Geotechnical Holdings and its director faces charges if gross negligence manslaughter

The UK's first corporate manslaughter case was heard in the crown court today.

Cotswold Geotechnical Holdings and its director Peter Eaton faced charges of gross negligence manslaughter in Stroud magistrates court, following the death of a young geologist last September.

The court heard the new charge had been brought against the firm as the “way in which the organisation's activities were managed or organised caused the death of a person”.

The two defendants are accused of breaching section one of the Corporate Manslaughter and Corporate Homicide Act 2007. The company faces an unlimited fine, while Eaton, is charged with gross negligence manslaughter under common law and faces a maximum sentence of life imprisonment.

The case is the first to be tried under the Corporate Manslaughter Act 2007.

No pleas were entered. The case has now been moved to Bristol crown court