The trial of Euromin and its general manager Richard Martell, who are accused of causing manslaughter by gross negligence, began at the Old Bailey yesterday (5 November).

Simon Jones, a casual worker on his first day of work at the company, was killed while helping unload a ship loaded with cobbles at Shoreham Docks near Brighton in April 1998. He was hit by a crane grab and partially decapitated.

Jones's family claimed he was given no training on arrival at the docks and was working with a Polish crewman who spoke no English.

The Crown Prosecution Service had originally decided not to prosecute Dutch-owned Euromin.

It was forced to reconsider last March when the Court of Appeal accepted Jones's family's application for judicial review of the decision.

To date, there have only been four successful prosecutions for corporate manslaughter.