The lifeless body of Oscar Abbey was found by his parents after he got his head stuck while trying to crawl through a gap in the bed in November 2016.
Leeds Crown Court heard that Craig Williams, the owner of the Playtime Beds Ltd company which sold Oscar’s parents the cot, had assured them it was suitable for children aged six or seven months.
The 37-year-old, of Park View Road, Kimberworth, Rotherham, South Yorkshire, didn’t modify his designs after Oscar’s death and continued to make the beds.
He was accused by prosecutor John Elvidge QC of “an utterly indifferent attitude towards the safety of small children, even after he had been visited by police in relation to Oscar’s death”.
Williams had been on trial for manslaughter by gross negligence but instead admitted to failing to discharge an employer’s general duty under the Health and Safety at Work Act, as well as a count of fraud.
Jailing him for three years and four months, Judge Martin Spencer told him that he had a “significant responsibility” for Oscar’s death, adding: “You should bear the brunt of that responsibility for the rest of your life.”
He added that Williams – who wiped away a tear as he was handed the sentence – had shown a “fragrant disregard” for British safety standards and committed a “wicked fraud” by continuing to sell beds following the boy’s death.
Williams’s employee, Joseph Bruce, 31, of Kimberworth Park Road, Rotherham, was jailed for six months after admitting a single count of fraud.
During the trial, a statement from Oscar’s father Charlie Abbey, 24, said he realised straight away that his son was dead when he found his body.
“It looked like he’d tried to crawl out backwards but his head was stuck”, he said.
Oscar’s mother Shannon Abbey, 23, said in a statement: “I heard Charlie shouting and screaming: ‘He’s not breathing.’ I ran to the landing and Charlie was holding Oscar in both arms.”