English Premiership

Outcry at £6,500 fine over Hillsborough disaster

Hillsborough disaster (File)
Hillsborough disaster (File)

London - Relatives of victims of the 1989 Hillsborough football stadium disaster voiced shock Monday after the only person ever convicted over the tragedy was sentenced to a fine of just £6,500.

Ninety-six people died in a  crush at an FA Cup tie between Liverpool and Nottingham Forest in the northern city of Sheffield on April 15, 1989.

Subsequent investigations found there had been gross negligence on the part of police and ambulance services.

Stadium safety officer Graham Mackrell was found guilty by a jury last month of failing to ensure there were enough turnstiles to manage unduly large crowds.

Relatives of the victims were present at the 69-year-old's sentencing at Preston Crown Court on Monday.

"Our 96 deserve better than this and us families deserve better than this," Louise Brookes, whose brother Andrew died at Hillsborough, told reporters outside.

"Our 96 dead and all it's worth is £67.70 each. Shameful. Thirty years to get to this... My weekly shopping costs more than £67.70," she said.

Mackrell, safety officer for Sheffield Wednesday who play at Hillsborough, had stood trial alongside David Duckenfield, the police match commander on the day. 

But a jury last month failed to come to a verdict on Duckenfield, who was accused of gross negligence manslaughter.

A hearing to decide whether he will face a retrial is expected to be held next month.

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