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Developers cleared in firefighter deaths

A court has acquitted two property developers who received suspended prison sentences over Switzerland’s worst firefighting disaster.

In an appeal hearing on Thursday the court in Solothurn overturned the brothers’ 20-month sentences issued in December 2010.

They were among five people who had faced homicide charges over the 2004 incident in which seven firemen died when a parking garage in Gretzenbach, northwestern Switzerland, collapsed on top of them as they fought to put out a fire.

The other three defendants were acquitted of the charges in  December.
 
Solothurn’s public prosecutor had charged five people involved in building the garage with negligent homicide, negligent bodily injury and negligently causing the collapse.

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