Monday 5 December 2016

Private investigator assisting Berkeley victims

Published 13/05/2016 | 02:30

Berkeley Mayor Tom Bates, left, and Philip Grant, Irish Consul General of the Western United States, walk in front of the apartment block where the balcony tragedy occurred (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)
Berkeley Mayor Tom Bates, left, and Philip Grant, Irish Consul General of the Western United States, walk in front of the apartment block where the balcony tragedy occurred (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)

A private investigator has been aiding the victims of the Berkeley balcony collapse with their multi-million dollar civil suit for damages over the tragedy, it has emerged.

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Legal papers filed with a court in California reveal that an investigator was retained by lawyers for the victims to gather documents that will help with their cases. The disclosure was made after the company that owns the building where the tragedy occurred sought to quash civil summonses issued against it.

The move is being fought by lawyers for the victims.

Copies of deeds, a lease memorandum and other legal papers were obtained by the investigator, the court was told in a legal filing.

The building is owned by BlackRock Granite Property Fund, a €2.5bn investment fund. It is among 32 defendants being sued for negligence by survivors and relatives of those who died when the balcony collapsed last June.

The tragedy claimed the lives of five Irish J1 students and a young Irish-American woman. Seven other Irish students were seriously injured.

Irish Independent

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