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Inquiry Blames Car Crash on Kremlin Envoy’s Dead Driver

The driver of a presidential administration official has been found guilty of causing a traffic accident that seriously injured the driver of another car, investigators said.

But since Vladimir Shugayev, the personal driver of Garry Minkh, the presidential envoy to the State Duma, died in the crash, the criminal case has been closed with no charges filed.

Shugayev rammed his BMW into an Opel Astra car driven by Alyona Yarosh, a 23-year-old architecture student, on Jan. 19 on Rublyovskoye Shosse, home to many of the city's elite, investigators said.

"Technical expertise has shown that the wheel and the breaking system were functioning properly, and the dead driver was the one responsible for the accident," said a Moscow regional police spokesman, according to Gazeta.ru.

Yarosh sustained numerous broken bones and a head injury. Shugayev, 53, died on the spot, while Minkh escaped with minor bruises.

Several witnesses said Shugayev's car, equipped with a flashing blue light, was driving in the wrong lane at the time of the accident. Bloggers later found videos posted by Shugayev on Mail.ru that show him violating traffic rules.

Yarosh's lawyer Olga Gonina said she would file a lawsuit against the Office of Presidential Affairs, which owns the BMW car. According to media reports, Yarosh is still recovering from the accident and requires further treatment.

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