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Five defendants in motorship wreckage case jailed, one of them amnestied

July 07, 2014, 17:14 UTC+3 KAZAN/MOSCOW

Passenger motorboat Bulgaria sank on Kuibyshevskoye dam lake, the largest on the Volga River, in Tatarstan on July 10, 2011

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People  gather to look at the Bulgaria passenger motorship in 2012

People gather to look at the Bulgaria passenger motorship in 2012

© ITAR-TASS/Alexei Nasyrov

KAZAN/MOSCOW, July 07. /ITAR-TASS/. Moskovsky district court in Kazan, the capital of Russian Republic of Tatarstan, has sentenced five defendants in the case of wreckage of passenger motorship Bulgaria to prison terms from five to 11 years. One of them was amnestied, ITAR-TASS reported from the courtroom on Monday.

The defendants are under-lessee of the motorship and director of AgroRechTour company Svetlana Inyakina, chief mate of Bulgaria captain Ramil Khametov, chief state inspector of Kazan branch of Russian transport watchdog Vladislav Semenov, head of Kazan branch of this Russian supervisory agency Irek Timergaziev and senior expert of Kama branch of Russian river-going vessel register Yakov Ivashov.

Inyakina was sentenced to 11 years in general security penitentiary. Khametov was sentenced to 6.5 years in jail, Vladislav Semenov — five years in prison, Irek Timergazeyev — six years in general security prison and Ivashov - five years in jail, but was acquitted under amnesty and released in the courtroom.

During court hearings the public prosecutor asked to sentence the defendants from six years and ten months [for Khametov] to 14.5 years [for Inyakina].

The judge started reading the court verdict at Kazan palace of culture on Thursday over a large number of injured parties.

Passenger motorboat Bulgaria sank on Kuibyshevskoye dam lake, the largest on the Volga River, in Tatarstan on July 10, 2011. At the moment of wreckage 201 people were staying abroad the motorship. As many as 122 people died in the ship sinking and 79 were saved.

The investigation of the Bulgaria wreckage case lasted for a year, spokesman of Russian Investigative Committee Vladimir Markin told ITAR-TASS.

“This was a truly complicated criminal case. A huge amount of work was done, only more than one thousand questionings were made. Along with this detectives have made around 30 searches and more than 200 probes. A complex ship-steering and engineering technical court expertise conducted from August 2011 to March 2012 was mostly complicated. Suspects were exposed in the expertise,” Markin said.

He noted detectives found that direct cause for Bulgaria’s wreckage had been poor navigation order of the ship regarding her technical order and the level of her crew training, breaking of navigation safety requirements, non-fulfillment or improper performance of duties by a ship operator, ship command, officials of controlling agencies and organizations as well as preparation of the motorship to sailing and her steering.

Meanwhile, the Investigative Committee spokesman noted that more people could have been saved, if not criminal actions of captains of dry cargo ship Arbat and towboat Dunaisky 66 which sailed by people in trouble not giving aid to them.

“Survivors said that this fact had broken their will and many of them had a feeling that no one needs them. Both captains were punished properly. I note that detectives had not just found causes of the tragedy, but also had taken measures to avert similar events in the future. It cannot be permitted that a desire for enrichment by irresponsible business people and corrupt officials at the expense of health and moreover life of people can remain unpunished,” Markin added.

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