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White Island Tours Plead Guilty To Amended Charges

White Island Tours pleaded guilty to two amended charges, in the Whakatane District Court, yesterday.

The company said, they "deeply regret" their risk assessment processes didn't adequately identify the risk of a significant eruption taking place without warning on Whakaari, therefore creating a risk to visitors and employees."

White Island Tours lawyer, Richard Raymond KC, told the Court, the plea reflects a complex case and lots of evidence.

"There has been considerable dialogue with WorkSafe which resulted in amendements to the particulars of the charges," Richard said.

He said, there was also consensus, on what is a detailed summary of facts.

WorkSafe chief executive, Phil Parkes welcomed the guilty pleas, saying their significance cannot be understated.

The company will be sentenced after the trial, which is due to start next month, with nine parties pleading not guilty.

Among those standing trial include the Buttle brothers and its company, Whakaari Management Limited.

GNS Science pleaded guilty and will be sentenced in August, while Inflite Charters were fined over a quarter million dollars,

National Emergency Management Agency had its charges tossed and were later awarded $40,000 in costs.

The charges do not relate to the events of the eruption or the rescue efforts.

Image: Supplied


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