12 Sep 2014

Pike families take fight to High Court

8:20 am on 12 September 2014

Two families of Pike River mine victims have applied for a judicial review of the decision to drop charges against the company's former chief executive Peter Whittall.

The Pike River coal mine in November 2010.

The Pike River coal mine in November 2010. Photo: AFP

Mr Whittall had faced 12 health and safety charges relating to the deaths of 29 men after a series of explosions at the West Coast mine that began on 19 November 2010.

The Pike families were paid compensation after the charges against him were dropped in December last year.

Anna Osborne, widow of contractor Milton Osborne, and Sonya Rockhouse, mother of 21-year-old miner Ben Rockhouse, are taking their fight to the High Court.

Mrs Osborne said there had been no justice, and she had no spent any of her compensation money.

"If there was justice it would be reparation for the families. This was blood money paid through an insurance company's payout from the sale of Pike River, so this has hurt no-one in the pocket apart from the insurance company Pike River had been dealing with."

Mrs Osborne wants a review of the charges against Peter Whittall and to possibly get them reinstated.

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