Stonehurst building company director in court over Birmingham wall-collapse death

Sasha Rudyy (right) died after a wall in a building site in Birmingham collapsed Credit: ITV News Central/ PA

A building company director has appeared in court accused of the manslaughter of an employee who died after a wall collapse.

Simon Briggs, 60, who is sole director of Stonehurst Estates Ltd, appeared at Birmingham Magistrates’ Court on Thursday, after being summonsed.

Oleksander Rudyy, known as Sasha, died in an incident on a building site where he was working in Vittoria Street, in the Jewellery Quarter area of Birmingham, on May 8, 2019.

The company, Stonehurst, is separately accused of failing to "plan and carry out the demolition or dismantling of a structure in such a manner as to prevent danger" with “the consent, or connivance, or neglect on the part of Simon Briggs”.

Oleksander Rudyy, known as Sasha, with his son Credit: Handout/PA

Another company which has Briggs as sole director – Vittoria Apartments Ltd – is accused of the same breach of the Health and Safety at Work Act.

The firms, Stonehurst and Vittoria, are also each facing a charge of corporate manslaughter after allegedly carrying out a “gross breach of a relevant duty of care” to Mr Rudyy.

Another man, Vasyl Bychkov, who gave his nationality as Ukrainian in court when asked if he needed a translator, appeared alongside Briggs accused of Mr Rudyy’s manslaughter.

The 43-year-old is also facing a charge under the Health and Safety at Work Act that while working as a fellow employee on-site, he “failed to take reasonable care for the health and safety of others… including Oleksander Rudyy” and another man, named in the charge as Yuriy Hnativ.

Neither man was asked to enter any pleas.

Briggs, of Danehill, West Sussex, and Bychkov, of Victoria Rise, Clapham, south London, were bailed to appear at Birmingham Crown Court on September 16.

The scene in Vittoria Street immediately after the collapse Credit: West Midlands Ambulance Service/PA

'You are powerless when your loved one passes'

Ahead of the hearing, Mr Rudyy’s widow Nelly said in a tribute issued through law firm Fieldfisher: "Sasha’s passing has left a big hole in my heart that can never be filled.

"There is an emptiness inside of me that will haunt me every day for the rest of my life.”

His 26-year-old son Volodymyr said: “He was not only a good father, but a really good friend.

"It just splits your life in half because everything you have imagined will never come true.

"You are powerless when your loved one passes, there is nothing you can do.

"Three years have passed and it is still very hard."