22nd October 2019
A landmark judgment* by the Supreme Court on 29th July ruled that the Asbestos Victims Support Groups Forum UK can access court documents used in a legal case against the asbestos manufacturer Cape Intermediate Holdings Limited. This follows a 2 year battle by the Forum in the courts.
The Forum would not have been able to pursue this case without the agreement of its legal team to act pro bono for the last two and a half years putting in a huge amount of unpaid work and representation in court. Our thanks go out to Harminder Bains of Leigh Day Solicitors and Rob Weir QC, Jonathan Butters and Harry Sheehan of Devereux Chambers.
Graham Dring, on behalf of the Asbestos Victims Support Groups Forum UK, applied in 2017 to access documents from a legal case against asbestos manufacturer Cape Intermediate Holdings Limited, which were due to be destroyed.
Graham believed that the documents would contain valuable information about the dangers of asbestos, revealing the research which had been carried out within the asbestos industry, and the influence which the asbestos industry had in setting health and safety standards in the UK, standards which still apply today.
The Forum believes the documents will help asbestos victims pursuing compensation cases in court and have agreed to make the documents publicly available. They may also shine a light on how and why the asbestos industry was allowed to regulate itself and continue its deadly trade for decades after its lethal effects were known about.
*Cape Intermediate Holdings Ltd -v- Dring (for and on behalf of Asbestos Victims Support Groups Forum UK)