Express & Star

Pair who fled UK jailed in their absence for serious fire safety breaches at West Bromwich flats

Two company directors have been jailed for almost three years each for serious and prolonged breaches of fire safety regulations at a West Bromwich block of flats.

Metro Court in West Bromwich High Street in 2017

Daniel Orasanu, aged 49, and Carmen Lupu, aged 34, fled the country before a jury trial that went ahead in their absence in 2018. The were found guilty in their absence, along with their company First Job Ltd, for three specimen charges under the Regulatory Reform Fire Safety Order.

Safety checks revealed breaches including an absence of fire doors, faulty fire safety equipment, fire alarms being switched off and gaps between dividing walls and ceilings at the premises.

On Thursday at Wolverhampton Crown Court, the Romanian nationals were sentenced in their absence after failing to return.

Sentencing them Judge Neil Chawla said: "In my judgement this was a serious and prolonged fire safety breach and offences so serious that only a sentence of custody is appropriate.

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