Man elec­tro­cuted by shower as he lived in squalor

Em­ployer kept work­ers liv­ing in rail­way arches

The Wharf - - The Week - Giles Broad­bent

T he owner of a Beth­nal Green car wash has been jailed for man­slaugh­ter after an em­ployee died when he was elec­tro­cuted while liv­ing in di­lap­i­dated con­di­tions pro­vided by the busi­ness in the rail­way arches next door.

Shaip Ni­mani, 52, of Pur­ley Av­enue, NW2 was con­victed at the Old Bai­ley of the man­slaugh­ter of Sandu Lau­ren­tiu and, on Mon­day, he was jailed for four years and or­dered to pay £20,000 to the vic­tim’s family.

Mr Lau­ren­tiu was fa­tally elec­tro­cuted in Au­gust 2015 while tak­ing a shower at the foul digs set up by Ni­mani at Bub­bles Car­wash in Mal­colm Place, E2.

He was liv­ing in the cramped, rat-in­fested con­di­tions in rail­way arches with five other men – all from Ro­ma­nia – while they worked at the car wash.

The wash area was so dan­ger­ous that men who lived and worked with Mr Lau­ren­tiu told in­ves­ti­ga­tors they reg­u­larly re­ceived elec­tric shocks while show­er­ing but thought this was the norm.

The am­bu­lance was called late on Au­gust 19 when Mr Lau­ren­tiu col­lapsed in the shower. He was taken to the Royal London Hos­pi­tal but he was pro­nounced dead later.

Health And Safety Ex­ec­u­tive in­ves­ti­ga­tors and po­lice in­spected the liv­ing quar­ters and found the premises as a whole were wet and rat-in­fested. The liv­ing area was badly wired and a fire risk with plugs over­loaded and ex­ten­sion leads plugged into more ex­ten­sion leads.

They also found the fuses in the junc­tion box had been tam­pered with so they wouldn’t blow and the elec­tric me­ter had been by­passed to avoid pay­ing the bill.

The HSE in­ves­ti­ga­tors found the shower was badly main­tained and had no earth con­nec­tion.

An or­der was made that banned Ni­mani from be­com­ing a com­pany di­rec­tor for the next 10 years. He was also or­dered to pay £20,000 costs.

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