From: Reuters
Published March 11, 2008 10:51 PM

French prosecutor wants U.S. airline charged over crash

PARIS (Reuters) - A French public prosecutor has asked judges to bring manslaughter charges against U.S. carrier Continental Airlines over the 2000 crash of a Concord flight that killed 113 people, the prosecutor's office said on Tuesday.

The prosecutor recommended similar charges be brought against a French engineer involved in the development of the now-grounded supersonic jet, the former head of France's civil aviation authority and two Continental Airlines staff.

A French judicial investigation concluded after the July 2000 crash that a piece of metal left on the runway from a Continental flight caused one of the Concorde's tires to burst on takeoff and sent debris into the engine. The plane crashed into a hotel outside Paris.

A judge is expected to decide in coming weeks whether to accept the demand filed by the Pontoise prosecutor's office, located outside Paris, and bring charges.

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(Reporting by Thierry Leveque, writing by Brian Rohan)

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