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Death charges

Three men were due to appear at Preston Crown Court yesterday charged with the manslaughter of two steeplejacks. Craig Whelan, 23, and Paul Wakefield, 40, who died in an explosion during the demolition of a 46 m-tall chimney at the Carnaud Metalbox factory, Bolton, in May 2002.

Carnaud managers Ian Billington and Colin Stevens and a third man John Kither have all pleaded not guilty.