KAZAN, May 6 (Itar-Tass) - The Moscow district court of Kazan on Monday began to review the high-profile case over the Bulgaria pleasure boat shipwreck in July 2011, in which 122 people died. During the hearing, two of the defendants - employees of the Rostransnadzor Federal Service for Supervision of Transport Vladislav Semyonov and Irek Timergazeyev - asked to give them more time to read the case materials. The court met their petitions.
Spokeswoman for the court Guzel Khafizova told Itar-Tass that the court had permitted Timergazeyev to use his notebook during the trial. The next hearing is due on May 27.
Earlier reports said the hearing was being held in the Yunost Palace of Culture, due to a large number of injured parties and eye-witnesses.
The hearing, chaired by judge Sergei Yakunin, is open. There are two prosecutors for the state, one from the Moscow district prosecutor's office and the other from the Tatar transport prosecutor's office. Yakunin said the court would take measures to make sure that the injured parties and witnesses who had failed to appear for the Monday hearing, attend the trial next time.
More than 100 injured parties, journalists and eye-witnesses gathered in the Yunost Palace of Culture on Monday.
The case comprises 96 volumes. Over 250 expert examinations were carried out in the period from August 2011 through March 2012.
The defendants are director of the AgroRechTur company Svetlana Inyakina, senior expert of the Perm sector, Russian Inland Waters Registry, Kama branch, Yakov Ivashov, former first officer of Bulgaria's captain Ramil Khametov, and Rostransnadzor employees Irek Timergazeeyev and Vladislav Semyonov.
"The investigators believe the direct cause of the Bulgaria pleasure boat accident was a combination of factors such as sea unworthiness both because of its technical condition and the level of the crew's training, non-compliance with safe navigation regulations, and improper performance of duties by the shipowner, crewmembers, and inspectors of supervising bodies in preparing the ship for operation and in operating it," spokeswoman for the Russian Prosecutor General's Office /PGO/ Marina Gridneva said earlier.
On July 10, 2011, the Bulgaria sank at a depth of 18 meters in the Kuibyshev water reservoir, Tatarstan's Kamsko-Ustinsky district. One hundred and twenty-two people died. There were 79 survivors.
"The damage to the shipowner - the Kama Shipping company - is estimated at some 30 million roubles," prosecutors said.
Inyakina, Ivashov, Timergazeyev and Semyonov have been under arrest. Khametov has been on a written pledge not to leave town.