A BMW sedan used by the country's police official responsible for road safety struck a boxy Zhiguli car in central Moscow on Thursday — and traffic police tried to cover up the accident, news reports said.
The BMW with the license plate A100MP was trying to bypass a traffic jam at the intersection of Ulitsa Vozdvizhenka, Nikitsky Bulvar and Ulitsa Novy Arbat when the accident occurred Thursday morning.
As the car crossed into an oncoming lane, it lost its driver's side mirror when it hit the driver's door of the Zhiguli, Izvestia
Traffic police officers, whose car was near the crash site, approached the BMW, and a man in a suit climbed out, the report said. The police returned the car's mirror to him, and he drove off.
By Russian law, both drivers in an accident must stay in place until the traffic police have filled out a crash report.
Drivers' rights group Blue Buckets subsequently linked the license plate to a vehicle used by Viktor Kiryanov, a deputy interior minister and head of the ministry's road safety department.
Contacted by Izvestia, Kiryanov said he was not in the car at the time of the accident.
The Zhiguli driver said the traffic police officers, on order of their boss, offered to pay for his car repairs out of their own pockets to "remove all questions" about the accident.
He said the officers laughingly told him that they would earn back their money on Kutuzovsky Prospekt, presumably meaning they would extort bribes from drivers.