French court absolves Continental of Concorde crash

VERSAILLES, France Thu Nov 29, 2012 9:14am EST

VERSAILLES, France Nov 29 (Reuters) - A French appeals court on Thursday absolved Continental Airlines of responsibility for a 2000 Concorde crash which killed 113 people and cleared a mechanic at the U.S. airline of the charge of involuntary manslaughter.

The verdict comes over a decade after the deadly accident that helped to spell the end of the supersonic airliner. A previous court found that a small metal strip, which fell onto the runway from a Continental aircraft just before the Concorde took off from Paris, caused the crash.

Continental was originally fined 200,000 euros and ordered to pay the Concorde's operator, Air France, a million euros in damages. Continental appealed the verdict which it described as unfair and absurd.

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