Four people were convicted of manslaughter Sunday by the Jerusalem District Court for their roles in the collapse of Jerusalem's Versailles banquet hall four years ago.
All four defendants - Uri Pesach, Shimon Caufman, Dan Sheifer and Pal-Kal inventor Eli Ron - were found guilty of manslaughter, despite the prosecution's attempt to convict them on charges of murder.
A fifth defendant, Yaacov Adiv, the promoter and contractor for the hall, was cleared of his charges after the judge determined that there was no causal connection between his negligence and the hall's collapse.
On May 24, 2001, the third-floor of the Talpiot hall caved in, killing twenty-three people and injuring nearly 400 of the 700 guests. Witnesses described a grisly scene, with people clinging to the sides of the floor, while others struggled to free themselves from the rubble.
In November, the three Israeli co-owners of the banquet hall were sentenced to prison for their roles in the hall's collapse. Avraham Adi and Efraim Adiv were given 30 months in prison, while Uri Nissim was ordered to serve four months in prison followed by four months of community service. Adi and Adiv planned to appeal.
Here is the film of the tragedy. It is mind boggling to see people dancing and smiling moments before they plunge to their death. Viewer discretion is advised.