An Italian court sentenced six scientists and a government official 6-year imprisonment on the charges of manslaughter. The scientists were accused of not being able to give adequate warning of an earthquake that killed more than 300 people in L’Aquila in 2009.
All the convicts who were member of National Commission for the Forecast and Prevention of Major Risks, were accused of negligence and malpractice in assessing the danger and informing the city about the risks.
What is the case?
The scientists on National Commission for the Forecast and Prevention of Major Risks were accused of giving "incomplete, imprecise and contradictory" information on the danger a few days before earthquake. They were accused of negligence in evaluating the tremors that preceded L’Aquila earthquake.
As per scientific opinion given by prosecutors, the dozens of lower level tremors seen months before the quake were typical of the kind of preliminary seismic activity seen before major earthquakes. However, Defense lawyers said earthquakes could not be forecasted and even if they could, nothing could be done to prevent them.