On April 24, 2013, the Rana Plaza building collapsed, killing 1,135 workers and injuring a further 2,515 in what has since been described as Bangledesh’s worst-ever industrial accident.
Today, over three years later, a court in the country has announced that 41 people are being charged with murder over this atrocity.
In addition, three people are being charged with helping plaza owner Sohel Rana, who is the principal accused, to flee after the collapse – Rana attempted to flee across the India border after the incident but was arrested after a four-day manhunt.
Rana Plaza, which housed five different factories that supplied brands around the world, was built on swampy ground outside the Bangledeshi capital, Dhaka. Rana, who has become one of the most hated men in the country, allegedly ordered workers to continue their work with threats of docked pay and violence the day after an engineer warned that it was on the verge of collapse.
Out of the 41 people being charged, 35 (including Rana) pleaded not guilty but, if convicted, it is understood that the defendants could face the death penalty.