An army major has today (Monday) been fined £5,000 after pleading guilty to health and safety charges in relation to the tragic death of 14 year old Kaylee McIntosh from Fyvie, Aberdeenshire. Kaylee died while taking part in a cadet training exercise in the Outer Hebrides in 2007.
Major George McCallum appeared at Inverness Sheriff Court this morning for a second time after the case was adjourned ten days ago. On his first appearance on the 9th November Major McCallum entered a guilty plea to charges under the Health and Safety at Work Act which carries no custodial sentence. The 52 year old was told he would have been given a higher penalty, had it not been for his guilty plea.
Kaylee’s parents Derek and Lesley McIntosh issued a joint statement in reaction to today’s developments:
“We would like to say that today, like the many other steps there have been on our road to justice, is about one person: our daughter Kaylee. We will never forget her, her warm smile, infectious laughter and the love she gave us. We think of her every minute of every day.
No parent should have to endure what we have - the taking away of one so young and so dear for the very worst of reasons: that those she thought were there to provide for her safety, to look after her, to see her back to the warmth, love and safety of her home, could not be bothered taking numerous basic, yet fundamental, precautions any one of which, if taken, might have seen Kaylee still with us today.
We would like to thank Sheriff Taylor for his kind words and for making us feel he is as outraged as us regarding what happened to Kaylee.
We can now but hope that the Crown Office, who have taken five and a half years to bring Major McCallum to justice, give anxious consideration to the Sheriff’s words, our views, those of our Counsel, our solicitors Thompsons and ensure that outstanding criminal proceedings are now swiftly advanced against others culpable in respect of Kaylee’s death.”
Thompsons Solicitors successfully sued the Ministry of Defence on the family’s behalf and assisted in the campaign for criminal action against those responsible. Partner Glen Millar added:
“Whilst the McIntosh family welcome conclusion of the case against Major McCallum today, they regard the matter of prosecutions arising from Kaylee’s death as far from complete. Major McCallum was but one of a number of individuals implicated in the Fatal Accident Inquiry findings and in the report of the Marine Accident Investigation Branch. I am now instructed to write to the Lord Advocate enquiring as to what progress, if any, there has been towards prosecution of other culpable parties in this most tragic of cases.”