The Attorney General v John Paul Horgan and Unit 6 Joinery Ltd

CourtRoyal Court
JudgeDeputy Bailiff
Judgment Date16 February 2018
Neutral Citation[2018] JRC 40
Date16 February 2018

[2018] JRC 040

Royal Court



T. J. Le Cocq, Esq., Deputy Bailiff, Nicolle and Ramsden.

The Attorney General
John Paul Horgan
Unit 6 Joinery Limited

R. C. P. Pedley, Esq., Crown Advocate.

Advocate A. M. Harrison for the Defendant.


Health and Safety at Work (Jersey) Law 1989

R -v- F Howe & Son (Engineers) Ltd (1999) 2 ALL ER 249

AG -v- Flying Flowers Limited [2009] JRC 210 .

AG -v- Hamel Bros [2010] JRC 080 .

AG -v- Peter Green (Builders) Limited [2012] JRC 225 .

AG -v- Somerville Limited [2017] JRC 086 .

R -v- Board of Trustees of the Science Museum [1993] 3 All ER 853 .

Costs in Criminal Cases (Jersey) Law 1961.

Inferior Number Sentencing — contravention of Health and Safety at Work (Jersey) Law 1989

Sentencing by the Inferior Number of the Royal Court, following a guilty plea to the following charge:

John Paul Horgan

1 count of: Contravention of Article 23(1)(a) of the Health and Safety at Work (Jersey) Law 1989, as amended (Count 1).

Age : 50.

Plea: Guilty.

Details of Offence:

John Paul Horgan is the Director and sole shareholder of Unit 6 Joinery Limited (“Unit 6”). Unit 6 is predominantly a wood working and joinery business.

The construction project at the property included the renovation and extension of the main house where Horgan resided, the demolition of a separate greenhouse, adjacent store and garage and the construction of 2 new dwellings with associated parking and landscaping. Horgan personally carried out construction work at the property as the property owner, as well as periodically using employees from Unit 6. The accident occurred in one of the new dwellings under construction. At the time of the accident, the main structure had been constructed. A foreman was employed to oversee the project, who said he attended the site for the first time on the day of the accident.

On 5 th April, 2016, the victim had been briefed to install insulation to the internal first floor ceiling rafters whilst the foreman cleared access to the first floor. The foreman cleared away several sheets of plywood covering the stairwell opening to the first floor, near to where the victim was working. No precautions were in place to prevent a fall down the open stairwell. The victim was having difficulty installing the insulation, and he was requested to sweep the area instead. He was repeatedly told to stay away from the stairway opening by the foreman, who physically moved him away at one point. Despite this the victim fell through the open stairway whilst the foreman was standing next to it.

He was taken to hospital. The victim suffered a fracture to the right neck of his humerus and an undisplaced fracture to the right radius and ulna. The fracture of the humerus required surgery and a metal plate was affixed.

Details of Mitigation:

Guilty plea, no previous record of incidents, Company is no longer trading.

Previous Convictions:

No relevant previous convictions.


Count 1: £15,000 fine

Cost Order sought in the sum of £2,500.

Sentence and Observations of Court:

Count 1: £10,000 fine

Cost Order made in the sum of £2,500, to be paid within 6 months and the Viscount is authorised to enforce the Order.

Unit 6 Joinery Limited

1 count of: Contravention of Article 21(1)(a) of the Health and Safety at Work (Jersey) Law 1989, as amended (Count 1).

Plea: Guilty.

Details of Offence:

See Horgan above.

Details of Mitigation:

See Horgan above.

Previous Convictions:

See Horgan above.


Count 1: Nil, unable to pay.

Sentence and Observations of Court:

Count 1: Ordered that the penalty shall be met by Horgan as Unit 6 is unable to pay any fine as it is no longer trading..

Deputy Bailiff



The Company Unit 6 Joinery Limited and Mr Horgan are to be sentenced each for a single infraction of Article 21(1)(a) of the Health and Safety at Work (Jersey) Law 1989. The incident took place on 6 th April, 2016, which is to our mind a considerable time ago, and we are surprised that it has not been brought before the court before now.


The company is a joinery business and its principal and sole director is Mr Horgan. Ninety percent of the company's business was conducted within a workshop environment with ten percent...

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