French authorities are opening a criminal manslaughter investigation into the death of French Survivor contestant Gerald Babin earlier this year, according to The Hollywood Reporter. The show's producer, Adventure Line Productions, as well as host Denis Brogniart, may face charges.
Prosecutors interviewed several witnesses, including members of the show's crew, and also reviewed footage from the show before officially opening the investigation, THR reports.
French Survivor season canceled after contestant dies during filming
Babin, 25, died in March during the first day of filming in Cambodia, when he suffered cardiac arrest after a tug-of-war challenge. He collapsed during the challenge after complaining of cramps and died as he was being airlifted to a hospital after receiving treatment on the island. The season was subsequently canceled.
Babin, like all contestants on Survivor, was required to pass a medical evaluation before participating on the show.
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Sources later came forward to say that the treatment Babin received in a local infirmary was "delayed several minutes so as not to interfere with filming," and that he was not airlifted immediately because producers deemed it "too costly," according to THR. Brogniart and Adventure Line have denied the accusations.
The show's staff physician, Thierry Costa, committed suicide on April 1, writing in his suicide note that "unjust accusations and assumptions have been made against me."