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MOSCOW, May 15 (Itar-Tass) - Officials of the Krymsk district of the Krasnodar Territory, where more than 150 people were killed in the flooding on July 6-7, were trying not to minimise the calamity effects, but to justify their inaction, spokesman for the Russian Investigative Committee (SK) Vladimir Markin says.
The Abinsky District Court on Wednesday begins the consideration on the merits of the criminal case over the death of people in the flooding. The defendants in the case are the former head of the Krymsk district, Vasily Krutko, the head of the Krymsk urban settlement, Vladimir Ulanovsky, the former head of the Nizhnebakansky rural settlement, Irina Ryabchenko, acting head of the Department for the Prevention of Emergency Situations and Civil Defence of the Krymsk district Viktor Zhdanov.
Markin recalled that the investigation of this case has lasted for about eight months. The investigation team at various stages comprised from 16 to 150 officers of the Investigative Committee. There are almost 200 volumes in the case.
“The unprecedented nature of the investigation is characterised not only by the scale of the investigative actions, but also by the expert examinations that were conducted to establish the truth. They include the geographical, hydrometeorological and hydro-technical expert examinations. Data from military and civilian satellites were requested for these examinations, specialists from various spheres, for example, bridge engineering, were attracted, examinations of reservoirs were conducted with the use of helicopters,” Markin said.
“It has been established as a result of this work that negligence of Krutko, Ulanovsky, Ryabchenko and Zhdanov caused such large-scale tragedy. In this situation the officials were concerned with justifying their inaction by any means, rather than with minimising the effects of the calamity. Eventually they resourted to forgery,” the SK spokesman said.
He explained that Krutko, Ulanovsky and Ryabchenko instructed their subordinates to retroactively make official documents containing false information about a meeting of the Emergency Commission, the introduction of a state of emergency, as well as issuing of the warning for the population.
“And Viktor Zhdanov went even further, planning to cash in on the tragedy. Despite the fact that his home was not affected and even was not in the calamity zone at all, the defendant put it on the list of houses damaged by the disaster, indicating four members of his family. It’s just a kind of the quintessence of cynicism,” Markin said.
“Unfortunately, such tragedies allow us to understand who is who in this life. The natural calamity made some people heroes who risked their lives to save even strangers, and in other cases it catalysed the worst side of human nature,” the SK spokesman concluded.