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Posted: 4/24/2001 8:21:46 AM EDT
WELLINGTON, New Zealand (Reuters) - A New Zealand investment banker has been jailed for two years for the manslaughter of a colleague by setting fire to his costume at an office Christmas party, the banker's lawyer said Tuesday.

Matthew Schofield, an investment banker with finance house Merrill Lynch, admitted to reaching under a toilet cubicle door and setting fire to Gareth MacFadyen's synthetic grass skirt a company Hawaiian theme Christmas Party in December, Radio New Zealand reported.

MacFadyen suffered burns to 95 percent of his body and died three days later.

Justice Rodney Hansen said he accepted 27-year-old Schofield was truly remorseful and any sentence would not compare with the punishment of knowing he had killed his friend, the radio reported.

But he said a term of imprisonment was required to reflect the sanctity of human life.

Schofield was also been sentenced to nine months, to be served concurrently, for injuring another Merrill Lynch employee in the incident, and ordered to pay NZ$37,000 to the two victims' families.
Link Posted: 4/24/2001 8:41:21 AM EDT
They really should Ban those Dangerous synthetic Grass Skirts!
Link Posted: 4/24/2001 8:54:52 AM EDT
Maybe they should smoke pot instead of drinking at those office parties.[:)]
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