Historical sentence in asbestos trial

A court in Turin has sentenced Stephan Schmidheiny and Jean Louis de Cartier to 16 years in the Eternit asbestos trial. The defendants were found guilty of environmental disaster and wilful omission of safety precautions.

The trial, which began in 2009 after a five-year investigation, is the biggest of its kind against a multinational for asbestos-related deaths. To this date, victims continue to be affected. The inhalation of asbestos fibres can cause lung inflammation and cancer, and symptoms can take up to 20 years to appear after exposure.

Eternit went bankrupt six years before asbestos was banned in Italy in 1992.