Lift company guilty over Highgate banker's death

THE world's biggest lift installer is facing a massive fine after admitting responsibility for the horrific death of a Highgate city banker. Thyssen Krupp Elevator UK faces sentence with gym chain Holmes Place Health Clubs after high flyer Katarzyna Woja

THE world's biggest lift installer is facing a massive fine after admitting responsibility for the horrific death of a Highgate city banker.

Thyssen Krupp Elevator UK faces sentence with gym chain Holmes Place Health Clubs after high flyer Katarzyna Woja, 32, was trapped and crushed in a lift shaft in Broadgate in 2003.

The Polish-born fund manager, who lived in Hornsey Lane, was the last of seven people to exit the lift but as she approached the doors the lift plunged downwards.

She suffered horrific injuries and died at the scene after becoming trapped between the outer walls of the lift and dragged downwards.


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Holmes Place Health Clubs admitted responsibility for Miss Woja's death last year.

And German firm Thyssen Krupp - which has assets valued at 40billion Euros and was due to stand trial - pleaded guilty to health and safety breaches yesterday.

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On behalf of the company Nicholas Purnell QC entered a single guilty plea to failing to discharge a duty under the health and safety act between January, 2001 and March 13, 2003.

Speaking outside Southwark Crown Court Ms Woja's husband Nebojsa Dorontic, 39, said the family felt "robbed" of justice, as no evidence had been heard in court about why the accident took place.

He said: "We are not happy with the time it took to come to this point. Unfortunately, evidence was not heard, and my Katya died, my wife died, so this is a very bitter pill to swallow. That's why we feel that we have been robbed of justice."

Thyssen Krupp Elevator UK and Holmes Place will both be sentenced on May 14 at Southwark Crown Court.

Following the sentencing, there will be an inquest into the death, with civil proceedings by Mr Dorontic to follow.

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