The owner and the manager of a San Francisco printing company where a pregnant employee was killed in a machine accident in 2008 pleaded not guilty to manslaughter charges in court today.
Digital Pre-Press International owner and CEO Sanjay Sakhuja, 52, and pressroom manager Alick Yeung, 50, are each charged with involuntary manslaughter and violation of a California Occupational Safety and Health Administration code in connection with the Jan. 29, 2008, death of Margarita Mojica. The company is also charged in the case.
Mojica, 26, of Oakland, was crushed to death by a creasing and cutting machine she was preparing for a job. Both men, as well as the company, were arraigned on the charges in San Francisco Superior Court this morning and entered pleas of not guilty. They are out of custody and are due back in court Dec. 17.
Prosecutors allege that workers at the company had not been trained to safely operate the machine, and that the machine lacked required safety devices.
Cal-OSHA cited the company for various safety violations in 1999, 2001 and following Mojica's death.
If convicted, the defendants could face up to four years in prison and fines of up to $250,000. The corporation could be fined up to $1.5 million.
Sakhuja's attorney has called Mojica's death "a horrible accident" and noted that the company had already reached a multi-million dollar settlement with Mojica's family.