No inquest into Lamma ferry disaster, says James To

Families of some of the 39 people killed in the 2012 Lamma ferry disaster have reportedly been notified that there won’t be an inquest into what happened on National Day eight years ago.

The outgoing legislator assisting the families, James To from the Democratic Party, said the families had received a letter from the Coroner’s Court notifying them of the decision. He described the decision as shocking, saying the Lamma ferry tragedy was unprecedented in Hong Kong’s maritime history. He said an inquest was necessary to get to the bottom of what really happened.

To urged the court to reconsider its decision.

On the evening of October 1 2012, the Hong Kong & Kowloon Ferry “Sea Smooth” collided with the Hongkong Electric vessel “Lamma IV”, partially sinking the latter. Lamma IV had been taking employees and their families out to watch the National day firework display.

The captains of the two vessels and two Marine Department officials were given jail sentences in connection with the disaster, Hong Kong’s worst maritime accident in decades.

Seventeen Marine Department officers were found guilty of misconduct and disciplined by the Civil Service Bureau over the tragedy.

Earlier this month, families of the victims said they might file a private prosecution against those responsible after the Department of Justice closed the door on further legal action.
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