The evidence collected by the Main Investigative Department of the Investigative Committee of the Russian Federation for the Republic of Crimea and the city of Sevastopol was recognized by the court as sufficient for sentencing a 45-year-old individual entrepreneur accused of providing services that do not meet the safety and security requirements for the life and health of consumers, which resulted in the death of people (Part 3 Article 238 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation).
The investigation and the court have established that the individual entrepreneur had organized the provision of passenger transportation services on the territory of the Republic of Crimea using a Mercedes-Benz Sprinter 315CDI vehicle driven by a 48-year-old resident of Nizhnegorsky Raion. The driver had no employment relations with the individual entrepreneur and made the van trip on the basis of an oral agreement. On the afternoon of July 30, 2020, the van left Simferopol for Krasnodarsky Krai; at 2 am on July 31, the van returned back via the Crimean Bridge, which was recorded by the video surveillance system. The individual entrepreneur knew for certain that the driver had been driving the vehicle for a long time without a break or rest. Despite these circumstances, he instructed the driver to make a return trip on the Krasnodar-Sevastopol route.
As a result, in the early morning of July 31, 2020, the driver – being in a state of fatigue and reduced attention due to prolonged driving – made a collision on the 167–168 km Section of the Tavrida highway near the village of Rusakovka, Belogorsky Raion, with a KAMAZ truck, which was moving ahead in the same direction. Eight passengers of the van and the driver died at the scene, nine more passengers in the Mercedes suffered various injuries.
A large amount of work was carried out as part of the criminal case investigation: a wide range of victims and witnesses, as well as invited experts in road control and supervision were interrogated, video recordings from surveillance cameras along the path of the vehicle were seized and studied, more than 30 various complex examinations were carried out. An audit of the individual entrepreneur activities was carried out together with the bodies of the Rostekhnadzor Agency, which revealed multiple violations in the organization of transportation of individuals.
On the basis of the totality of evidence collected, the court found the entrepreneur guilty of the crime he had been accused of, and sentenced him to 5 years and 6 months in prison with serving the sentence in a general regime penal colony.