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Murder Charges In Bangladesh Over 2013 Garment Factory Collapse

The relative of a worker who died in the 2013 Rana Plaza collapse mourns April 24 in front of a monument erected in memory of the victims. Authorities charged more than 40 people today with murder in connection with the building's collapse that killed 1,137 people.

Authorities in Bangladesh have charged more than 40 people with murder in connection with the country's worst industrial accident that killed more than 1,100 people in 2013. Among those charged is Sohel Rana, the man who owned the Rana Plaza complex, the collapse of which injured another 2,500 people.

The Dhaka Tribune reports that Rana's parents were also charged. The Daily Star, another local newspaper, adds that those charged include government officials.

The charges relate to two cases, news reports said: one linked to the 1,137 deaths in the Rana Plaza collapse; the other connected to violation of building codes.

The Associated Press reports:

"Investigators initially had said the accused, who also include the owners of the five factories that the building housed, would be charged with culpable homicide, but they later changed their plans due to the gravity of the accident, Bangladesh's worst industrial disaster. If convicted of murder, the defendants could face the death penalty. The maximum punishment for culpable homicide is seven years in jail."

The garment sector is one of Bangladesh's main revenue earners, and the collapse of the Rana Plaza drew global attention to the working conditions of the people who make clothes for some of the world's most popular retailers.

You can find NPR's complete coverage of this story here.

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