China's top prosecuting agency has filed criminal charges against 11 public officials in the June 3 poultry plant fire that killed 121 people. Among those facing charges of dereliction of duty are a township head, local building officials, a township police chief, and several fire officials.
The poultry plant fire fire was ignited by a short circuit, but investigators found that the Jilin Baoyuanfeng Poultry Co. plant violated safety regulations, including having safety exits blocked at the time of the fire, according to news sources. China's work safety agency has blamed the local government for negligence in oversight and inspection.
Jiancha Daily said local township officials, including those in charge of building quality, had failed to properly inspect the plant, which was filled with fire hazards such as substandard building materials. The report said police had not taken any action against Jilin Baoyuanfeng Poultry Co. despite its failure to hold fire drills, provide safety training or install sufficient fire-extinguishing equipment.
The plant's owners and managers have also been detained, and its assets have been frozen.
The facility produced 67,000 tons of chicken products annually.