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Amurskaya Owner Arrested

The owner of the missing Amurskaya freighter has been arrested on suspicion of negligence leading to multiple deaths.

Police in the far eastern city of Komsomolsk-on-Amur said early Tuesday that they had arrested the CEO of the Nikolayevsk-on-Amur Sea Port, the company that owns the missing vessel.

The manager, whose name has not been disclosed, is expected to be charged with violations of maritime safety rules leading to two or more deaths. The charges carry a sentence of up to seven years in jail.

The Amurskaya freighter was carrying a cargo of 700 tons of gold ore when it went missing near the Shantar Islands in the Sea of Okhotsk on Oct. 28.

All nine crew members are still missing.

Rescuers said Monday that they believed they had located the missing vessel in shallow waters near its last known location, but a diving expedition to conduct a closer inspection had to be postponed because of deteriorating weather. 

An officer on the rescue tug at the scene said divers would try to reach the submerged object again on Wednesday, Interfax reported.

An Emergency Situations Ministry aircraft searching the area of the suspected wreck returned to base after failing to find any survivors Tuesday.

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