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Ship's mate admits manslaughter

PUBLISHED: 11:46 17 September 2009 | UPDATED: 17:10 25 August 2010

A SHIP S mate has admitted manslaughter after a passenger slipped and drowned in the Thames whilst disembarking from a pleasure boat.

A SHIP'S mate has admitted manslaughter after a passenger slipped and drowned in the Thames whilst disembarking from a pleasure boat.

First mate Ryan Sandall, 24, of The Lady Thursday, Galleon's Point Marina, Victoria Dock, Beckton, pleaded not guilty at the Old Bailey yesterday morning but returned to the court and changed his plea.

Adrian Jair Hernandez, 32, died after plunging into the river while leaving a party on board the Hurlingham on August 17 last year.

His body was found five days after he had fallen through a gap between the boat at Westminster pier.

Judge Christopher Moss QC granted Sandall unconditional bail and ordered a pre-sentence report to be compiled before he is sentenced at the conclusion of the captain's trial on February 8 next year.

Captain William Britton, 60, of Bexley Lane, Sidcup, denies manslaughter and engaging in conduct likely to cause the death or serious injury to another, contrary to the Merchant Shipping Act 1995.

The judge ordered the latter charge for Sandall to be left to lie on file.

Britton, who was also granted unconditional bail, admitted a charge of intending to pervert the course of justice by signing a statement he knew to be false on August 18.

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