THE FAMILY of a man who died after falling 60ft down a lift shaft on board a container ship have demanded an apology from the shipping firm after it was convicted of corporate man-slaughter.

As exclusively reported by the Daily Echo, OOCL was last week found guilty of the charge they denied in connection with the death of Courtenay Allan 11 years ago.

Since then his family has been battling to uncover the exact circumstances surrounding the death of the 53-year-old company director who lived in Southampton and West End before moving to Essex shortly before his death in July 2003, Mr Allan, who survived the attack on the World Trade Center in 2001, was on board the OOCL Montreal entertaining clients when he walked through an open elevator door and plummeted six floors from the bridge on to the top of a lift car.

Last week, the company was convicted at the Palais de Justice in Le Havre – the French port where the ship was docked at the time of the accident. His family, led by sons Hayden, Tristan and Ben Allan, have now hand delivered a letter to the Hong Kong-based shipping company calling for an apology.

In it they say: “Following the criminal conviction in France we would expect, and are surprised, not to have had any communication from your company expressing any regret or public apology.”

The letter also calls on the company not to appeal the ruling.

OOCL have said they will not comment until after the full judgement has been published by the French courts.