Businessmen faked documents to trick officials investigating factory death, court hears
Businessman who attempted to trick officials investigating the death of a construction worker faked a string of documents handed to police, a court heard.
Raymond Brady and his son Mark Brady allegedly 'fabricated' safety management records after Stephen Wallace plummeted to his death from an asbestos roof in West Bromwich in 2009.
They claimed a workplace examination was completed the month before Mr Wallace's death but instead forged the documents after the tragedy to fool police and health and safety investigators, prosecutor Mr Adam Budworth said.
Sitting at Wolverhampton Crown Court, jurors were told wheelchair-bound Raymond Brady, of Warwick Road, Solihull, has advanced Parkinson's disease.
He has been declared unfit to plead but will still stand trial alongside his 47-year-old son.
In his opening to the jury, Mr Budworth said: "Raymond Brady is a successful businessman. No one would wish his current situation on him. But it's important that he faces some sort of trial.
"The Crown's case is that these defendants set about deliberately duping the authorities and those investigating into believing that a risk assessment and method statement had been in place prior to the fatal roof work.
"They sought to fool the authorities in this way so as to deflect or diminish their criminal responsibility and their civil liability."
Mr Wallace was replacing sky lights on a roof at Bromford Iron and Steel's West Bromwich factory when tragedy struck at about 11am on September 10, 2009.
He fell through one of the existing lights he was fixing and plunged onto concrete floor 8m below the roof before dying of his injuries the next day.
The jury of six men and six women heard Mr Wallace was working for David Jones, who won the contract to refurbish the Bromford Lane factory from 70-year-old Raymond Brady's company.
Jones failed to complete a risk assessment and method statement he should have carried out before Mr Wallace started the 'risky work', Mr Budworth said.
The trio then falsely completed the documents, claiming they were filled in prior to the roof work, and handed the written forms over to police, the court heard.
But police only discovered the documents had been forged five years later when Jones was called to give evidence at Mr Wallace's inquest and 'decided to come clean'.
Jones, who has since pleaded guilty to his offending, confessed to officers the risk assessment and method statement had been fabricated, the prosecutor revealed.
He said he was never asked to produce the risk assessment and method statement, claiming Raymond Brady only spoke to him about it after Mr Wallace was rushed to hospital.
Mark Brady, of Temple Road, Dorridge, Solihull, denies doing an act tending or intending to pervert the course of public justice between September 10 and 11, 2009.
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