The Real Deal New York

Harco, ex-foreman blame Sky Materials for worker death

Carlos Moncayo was buried in a pit in April 2015 at Restoration Hardware site
May 19, 2016 11:00AM

9-19 Ninth Avenue in (inset: Carlos Moncayo)

9-19 Ninth Avenue in Meatpacking District (inset: Carlos Moncayo)

Harco Construction and one of its former supervisors are blaming Sky Materials Corp and its own ex-foreman Wilmer Cueva for a fatal accident at 9-19 Ninth Avenue in the Meatpacking District last year.

A lawyer for Harco and Alfonso Prestia said in court Wednesday that neither Prestia nor his former employer should be held accountable for the death of construction worker Carlos Moncayo because it’s not within their rights to order Sky to fire one of its employees or “tell them how to do their work,” DNAinfo reported.

Back in April, Prestia blamed Harco for Moncayo’s death, saying it wouldn’t let him fire Cueva.

All four parties were charged with manslaughter, homicide and reckless endangerment in the August 2015 accident at Aurora Capital Associates and William Gottlieb Real Estate’s site, the former home of the French Bistro Pastis, where developers are building a Restoration Hardware store.

Harco and Prestia’s trial began this week. Sky and Ceuva’s has not yet gotten under way.

All four defendants are said to have ignored multiple warnings that a pit at the site was unsafe. Prestia’s lawyer also argued in court that inspectors never included those warnings in their mandatory daily written reports to Harco. [DNAinfo]Ariel Stulberg